Here’s a very simple but delectable vegetable dish cook with coconut milk. It is called ginataang kalabasa at sitaw or squash & string beans in coconut milk. It is my favorite Filipino vegetable dish. Some cook this as ginataang kalabasa or ginataang sitaw alone. I prefer cooking them together because I love the healthy combination of kalabasa & sitaw as well as the very appealing color of these vegetables when cooked together.
1 small squash, peeled and cubed
12 pieces string beans, cut into 2 ½ inch length
1 1/4 cups coconut cream/kakang gata (I used 1 can coconut cream.)
1/2 pound pork liempo, sliced into 1 ½ inch strips
1/4 pound shrimps, peeled& deveined
1 small onion, sliced thinly
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 inch 1 thumb-size ginger, cut into strips (optional)
1 tablespoon sautéed shrimp paste (I used Barrio Fiesta’s bottled Sauteed Shrimp Paste.)
2 tablespoons fish sauce
salt and pepper to taste
1. In a wok or large pan, over low heat, cook the pork (stirring frequently) in its own juice with little salt until it renders fat and the meat is light brown. Push the cooked meat to one side of the pan and sauté the garlic using pork fat until light brown.
2. Add ginger and onion. Saute until onion is translucent.
3. Add the squash and shrimp paste. Saute for 2 minutes then add in the coconut milk. Bring to boil. Make sure to stir this occasionally to avoid curdling. Simmer until squash is half cooked, that is about 5 minutes.
4. Add the string beans and fish sauce. Simmer until string beans are almost cooked, then add the shrimps. Add salt & pepper to suit your taste. Simmer for a minute or two.