Ok, so the name of my blog probably throws visitors off a bit. So I guess it's time to explain the name and logo behind all the magic. Sisig to me, represents the ultimate pulutan food...or finger foods eaten with alcohol and more specifically beer. It's crunchy, fatty, salty, sour, spicy, sweet and even a bit bitter. Almost representing every single thing I like about Filipino cuisine. And I love everything about Filipino food and what it represents...so that's where the heart in my logo comes from. Now the spoon in the fork symbolizes the big ass spoon and forks that are on every, ok maybe not every, Filipino households wall. Mine does at least! So there you have it. The story behind the name.
For an authentic sisig recipe and great write up on the origins and variations of sisig, read @CzarinaCleo article "How to Cook Sisig - Authentic Filipino Recipe Perfect with Beer"
I do live in Bay Area and we all know that we do things a bit different out here. So different and unique that the first ever vegan Filipino restaurant, No Worries, was opened in Oakland to much success. It was the first time, I have ever experience Filipino food without having to eat real meat or seafood. This entire year, Twitter has really introduced me to great groups of people, especially food bloggers and foodies. Actually, because of social media, the first annual AstigVegan Challenge was born. The challenge for the competitors was to create a dish that was Filipino inspired but totally vegan. Ok, no problem right? Right? I'll just get some soy protein, simmer it in soy sauce vinegar with some garlic, bay leaves and pepper corn and presto...adobo! But that's the obvious type of $#!% you would expect. I wanted to come out and represent the foodie in me and also my brand! Yup....according to one of my Foodbuzz Festival blogger sessions, my blog is my brand. So vegan sisig it was. (OK, i wanted to get fancy, so I also came up with vegan binagoognan with vegan bagaoong conjured up by my good friend, Chef Dom Ainza of Mercury Lounge - recipe to follow later...I promise!)
Next Food Network Star meets Dinner impossible meets possible disaster
In order to have the texture and crunch that was needed for my recipe, I knew that the sisig had to be finished and plated at the event. Did, I mention that the potluck was outdoor at a park, with no outlets? No problem, they do it all the time on TV. So off we go, well after having deep fryer issues and packing up tables, catering trays and a whole bunch of necessary items. Did I mention that I forgot to pack some important utensils! Luckily RG had some to lend.
|Didn't realize it was going to be a demo! yikes|
|added pressure from tweeter @R1Chsy|
2 packages of Extra Firm tofu - use more if you have a large party
1 onion diced
1 bundle of cilantro (chopped)
2 medium sized jalapenos (julienned)
1/2 cup of Sukang Maasim (cane vinegar)
1/4 cup of low sodium soy sauce
Philippine sea salt (I had some so I used it)
1 tbsp of vegetable oil
Fresh Calamansi - the more the better.
Drain the liquid out of the tofu packages and slice into 1/2 inch patties. Using a deep fryer set to 375 without the basket, place your tofu patties into your oil until crispy and golden. (We deep fried our tofu before we left of course) Feel free to pan fry your tofu if a deep fryer isn't an option. Now set aside to dry and make sure to salt to taste. Now mix all your ingredients together, minus the onions, in a large bowl and marinate for a few minutes. In a large pan, saute your onions for approximately 5 minutes.(You can saute for less if you want a bitter taste) Finally, mix in the rest of the ingredients and heat for about 2 minutes. Presto you are ready to serve! Depending on your taste, you can add calamansi to your marinade as well. You can never go wrong with calamansi and sisig.
|30 seconds remaining!|
|Finishing with the calamansi|
|First time vegan and filipino food diners|
|Time to eat|
|Vegan binagoognan photo courtesy of AstigVegan|