Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Pochero. Comfort Food

picture taken from

Pochero. Comfort Food.
Comfort food is Pochero.

Was the name Pochero derived from a Spanish word? Does it sound like Cocido? I just do not know how to pronounce Cocido, but Pochero? Pochero by any other name, or pronounciation, taste just the same. Grand.

Pochero is very versatile with the possible different combination and ingredients one can think of and can still be called Pochero. It somehow remind me of Irish stew with or without tomato sauce. Its all in the boiling, so they say. The longer it boils, the more tasty and whole it becomes. I've tried cooking it a couple of times before arriving at perfection. Perfection, yes. Ive achieved perfection in cooking Pochero. Not like a perfection of reaching buddhahood but more of a satori experience perfection. A short glimpse of enlightenment whenever people say that the Pochero do taste good. it is so simple to prepare and meat can be pork or beef. What matters is the boiling time and the meticulous mixture of liquid and seasoning to arrive at what I call Pochero perfection. It is slow food cooking.

Some do and some dont saute. I do. I put a perfectly measured cooking oil then start with the onions, then garlic, Bananas, and tomatoes. I put some magic powder (ala Wok with Yan) then the meat. Then when I feel that it is enough (yes, to feel what one is cooking is important. It is called oneness), I put in water then boil it until the meat softens up with the potatoes and carrots. After that delicate process, I enter the most important part of balancing the taste. I add some fish sauce, more magic powder (if and when required), sugar, and tomato sauce. It is a balancing act as I mix the sweet and salty in portions to reach what philosophers call deliciousness. Then I put in the green leafy chinese cabbage. Then it is done. Pochero perfection.

Pochero Perfection


1 kilo Beef or Pork
2 heads Onion
1 whole Garlic
2 Tomatoes
2 plantaine Bananas (Saging na Saba)
5 cups water
Potatoes (Kahit gaano kadami)
2 medium Carrots
2 ropes Chinese Cabbage (2 Tali ng Pechay)
Fish sauce
Magic Powder
Tomato Sauce

Corn Cob (optional)
Garbanzos (optional)
string beans (optional)

and the list of optional ingredients can go on and on and on and on......

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