In the Philippines, there are so many ways of making pansit. It's different in every region and it's different in every household. The ingredients also vary. The basics are meat and vegetables; some add fish cake and fish balls while others put squid, shrimp, and eggs. My Mama for one loves putting Chinese sausage on her pansit and she never puts green beans! I don't know why but that's always been her version.
We Filipinos love our pansit. Despite its many different variations, there's one ingredient that it should never go without—a squeeze of calamansi right on top. But, have you ever heard of soy sauce, onions, vinegar and calamansi mixture as a sauce for pansit? I haven't. That was until I went on vacation to Cagayan Valley two years ago where I had my first taste of Pansit Cabagan and Batil Patong.
And so here's my take on Pansit Cabagan. It's popular all over Northern Luzon but is originally from Cabagan, Isabela. It's similar to pansit canton but uses fried pork and cracklings or chicharon. In this recipe, I used lechon kawali.
To quickly make lechon kawali, just boil pork belly until fork tender. Sprinkle skin with salt before deep-frying. Reserve the broth for the pansit.
Pansit Cabagan Recipe
- 200 g dried egg noodles
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 onion (sliced)
- 100 g pork liver (sliced)
- 1 medium size carrot (julienned)
- 100 g sweet snap peas
- ½ cabbage (julienned)
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce (divided)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce (divided)
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce (divided)
- 1 ½ cups pork broth
- salt and pepper to taste
- 300 g fried pork or lechon kawali (sliced into serving pieces)
- 10 boiled quail eggs
- green onions (julienned)
- white vinegar or spiced vinegar
- soy sauce
- 1 small onion (finely chopped)
- calamansi juice
- Cook noodles according to package directions. Rinse well with cold water then set aside. This will prevent the noodles from being soggy and overcooked.
- In a wok or large pan over medium heat, sauté garlic and onions. Add liver. Cook for 5 minutes then add carrots. Lower the heat then cover with lid. After 5 minutes, add sweet snap peas and cabbage. Season with a teaspoon of oyster sauce, soy sauce and fish sauce. Continue stirring until vegetables have softened but not overcooked. Remove from pan then set aside.
- Pour pork broth in the pan. Add remaining oyster sauce, soy sauce and fish sauce. Bring to boil.
- Add noodles and half of the sautéd vegetables and liver. Gently toss together. Remove pan from the heat after 1 to 2 minutes. Season with pepper and a little salt. You don't need to much because the sauce will add more saltiness later.
- Transfer to a serving plate. Garnish with pork, quail eggs, remaining vegetables and green onions.
- Meanwhile for the sauce: mix 2 tablespoons vinegar, 2 teaspoons calamansi juice and onions. Add soy sauce one teaspoon at a time. Try it, taste it then adjust accordingly.
- Serve on individual plates and pour the sauce on top.
- Mix thoroughly. Enjoy!
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