Electric Lunchbox #74: Pork Sinigang

Filipino hot and sour soup!

Growing up I remember our cooks boil fresh tamarind until soft and press it through a metal strainer to get the “sour” for this soup. I never had to do that as I always have this packaged “sinigang” mix to use. I think it tastes the same, plus I really do not know where to get fresh tamarind, nor do I have the time to boil and squeeze it. Convenience in semi-home made is precious in our busy lives. It gives me more time to sit and enjoy dinner with my family. ❤️

You can make this with beef too, but I happened to have pork so I used pork. You want the pork to have some fat to make the soup richer and more tasty.

Long green beans

The vegetables I used here are what I remember our soup had, and I LOVE picking out the taro (gabi)! Water spinach is rather hard to find unless I go to an Asian grocery store, and our Tita Naty used spinach when she made it one cold day in Virginia, so I used spinach. Radish, long green beans, onions, and a tomato rounds everything out perfectly. If you want, add 1 or 2 whole long green chili pepper. Do not bruise or cut it. You serve it with the soup, take it out and crush it with some fish sauce in a small saucer, then drizzle it over your soup and rice. Yum! You have yourself a delicious lunch cooked with very little effort. I hope you’ll like this dish!

*NOTE that this recipe uses regular sized measuring cups, NOT the tiny ELB cup, unless specified.*

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Ingredients:

155 grams (1/2 cup or so) cubed boneless pork

30 grams (3-4 pieces) long beans, cut into 1.5” pieces

60 grams (1-2 pieces) taro, peeled and cubed

95 grams (1/2) radish, peeled and sliced thinly

30 grams (1 small) tomato, diced

35 grams (1 tablespoon) minced onion

15 grams (a handful) spinach leaves

1 1/2 cups water

1/2 – 1 tablespoon “sinigang mix” (I used 3/4 tablespoon)

1/2 – 1 teaspoon teaspoon beef bouillon powder

3 ELB cups water for the base

Fish sauce, to serve (optional)

If serving with rice:

2 ELB cups rice, rinsed and drained

2 ELB cups water for the rice

Procedure:

1. In the large ELB bowl, place pork, long beans, taro, radish, tomato, onion, spinach , and water

2. Add the “sinigang mix”, bouillon powder, and fish sauce, if using. Stir to mix.

3. Place bowl in the ELB base. Add 3 ELB cups of water to the base.

4. If preparing with rice, wash and drain 2 ELB cups of rice and place in the small or medium ELB bowl. Add 2 ELB cups water and place on top of the big bowl if using the small bowl (or on the upper level for the medium bowl).

5. Cover the ELB and let steam until it shuts off, about 1 hour.

6. Carefully open the ELB and check the meat and rice for doneness, adding more water to steam longer if necessary.

7. Serve hot and enjoy!

Electric Lunchbox #73: Pork Menudo

Menudo is a staple dish in fiestas, birthday parties and everyday lunch and dinner in the Philippines. See my stovetop version and introduction here: https://athomewiththeresa.com/?s=Menudo

I make it a lot at home so, like most of my staple recipes, I decided to make an ELB version.

You can add peas, garbanzo beans, and pork liver if you want.

Like I always say, use my recipes as a guide and add more or less of any ingredient you like or not like. I do encourage you to try it my way at least once though. Then make your adjustment after you taste it.

Hope you’ll try it soon and as always, I hope you’ll like it!

*NOTE that this recipe uses regular sized measuring cups, NOT the tiny ELB cup, unless specified.*

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Ingredients:

200 grams pork, cubed

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 hotdog, cut in half lengthwise and cut into small semi circles

1 tablespoon chopped onions

1 large tomato, diced finely (1/2 -3/4 cup)

1 potato, peeled and diced (about 1/2 cup or so)

5 baby carrots, diced (1/3 cup)

1/4 each of green and red bell peppers, diced

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 teaspoon fish sauce

1 tablespoon raisins

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon bouillon powder

2 teaspoons soy sauce

1/2 tablespoon cornstarch

3 ELB cups water in base

Procedure:

1. Season pork with salt and pepper.

2. Place pork, hotdogs, onions, tomatoes, potatoes, carrot, and bell peppers in the large ELB bowl.

3. Mix in tomato paste, fish sauce, raisins, water, bouillon powder, soy sauce, and cornstarch. Stir to mix.

4. Place bowl in the ELB base and add 3 ELB cups of water in the base. Cover and let steam until it shuts off, about 1 hour.

5. Carefully open the ELB and check the meat for doneness. Add more water to steam if necessary.

6. Serve hot and enjoy.

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Filipino Menudo

This Menudo recipe is a Filipino dish that makes it’s appearance on everyday lunch and dinner tables to fiestas and special occasions. It is tomato based and has a little sauce that make it perfect with white steamed rice, and LOTS of it!

You can use cubed chicken breasts or pork meat in this dish. I have not tried nor heard of a beef version though. Please let me know if you know of a Filipino menudo recipe made with beef!

When I was a kid, I remember this dish having *chopped liver when served, but I do not really like liver nor is it easy to find where I live now, so I left it out. If you want to add it, of course feel free to. I’m sure it will taste closer to the authentic version my aunts used to cook!

I usually add *sliced hotdogs to this dish too. My son loves hotdogs (I mean, all kids do right?!) so if I have it, it definitely goes in the recipe too. I just didn’t have any on hand this time.

Ingredients:

5 tablespoons canola oil, divided

1 pound pork or chicken breasts, cubed

3 potatoes, peeled and cubed

2 carrots, peeled and diced

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 Onion, diced

1/2 cup Tomato sauce

1 1/2 cups chicken broth

2 tablespoons soy sauce

*1 cup chopped liver, optional

*1 cup sliced hotdogs, optional

1 bell pepper, sliced

1/2 cup frozen peas

1/4 cup raisins

Salt and pepper

Procedure:

1. Season cubed chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Set aside.

2. In a wok or saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken and let cook until lightly browned about 4-5 minutes, without stirring. You want that caramelization as it adds so much flavor to the dish. Give it a quick stir and let sit again until most of it is lightly browned.

3. Remove chicken pieces to a plate and set aside.

4. Add another 2 tablespoons oil to the pan and heat up. Pan fry the potatoes and carrots until lightly browned. Remove to a plate and set aside. *You can skip this step but my Tita Saning who showed me this recipe did it this way, so I am sharing this step too. Kind of like honoring her memory. I miss those times. ❤️

5. Heat up the last tablespoon of oil and saute the garlic until fragrant. Add the onions and saute for about 3-5 minutes, until golden.

6. Add in the tomato sauce, chicken broth, and soy sauce and bring to a boil. Add the chicken pieces, potatoes, and carrots. *If using liver and hot dogs, add them too*

7. Let simmer over medium-low heat until meat and potatoes are done, about 20-25 minutes. Taste, taste!

8. Add the bell peppers, peas, and raisins and simmer until heated through, about 5-10 minutes more. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

9. Serve hot over freshly cooked rice. Fish sauce on the side is optional, but highly recommended! 😋

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Electric Lunchbox # 67: Green Beans with Beef and Noodles

This is one of our favorite side dish/main dish at home so I decided to make it in the ELB. My husband and my son loves green beans cooked this way – a total winner as I do too!

I also made this recipe so you only have to use one bowl, and everything cooks in there from raw. Easy clean up! More time doing important things!

Cook rice in the top small bowl if you want, but by itself, this dish is quite filling. The noodles give it bulk but you won’t feel heavy.

You can also adjust how soupy you want this to be by adding a little more or less water, but please do not reduce it so much as you need water to cook the noodles. Remember that they absorb water too!

*NOTE that this recipe uses regular sized measuring cups, NOT the tiny ELB cup, unless specified.*

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Ingredients:

1/2 – 3/4 cup green beans, sliced diagonally

1/3 – 1/2 cup ground beef

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon minced, dried onion

1 teaspoon tomato paste

1 1/3 cups water

20 – 25 grams rice or cornstarch noodles, broken to fit the ELB bowl.

1/2 teaspoon beef bouillon powder

1/2 teaspoon soy sauce

1/4 teaspoon fish sauce

1/8 teaspoon pepper

Procedure:

1. Place the green beans, ground beef, garlic powder, onion, tomato paste, water, rice noodles, bouillon powder, soy sauce, fish sauce, and pepper in the big bottom bowl of the ELB.

2. Pour 3 ELB cups water in the base.

3. Place the bowl in the ELB base, cover and let steam until it shuts off, about an hour.

4. Carefully open the ELB and check if the noodles and meat are done.

5. Serve hot and enjoy!

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Electric Lunchbox # 66: Mabo Tofu, Korean Style

I wanted to make Japanese style mabo dofu but didn’t have some of the ingredients. No problem, I’ll make it Korean style!

You can definitely up the spice on this one if you want by adjusting the amount if gochugaru (red pepper flakes). I want to taste my food with a little spice but I’m not a fan of tasting ONLY hot and spicy 🌶!

If you prepare rice in the little bowl, you’ve got yourself a delicious meal with just a little time spent preparing it.

Hope you like it!

PS: I will post the Japanese style Mabo Dofu once I get all the ingredients I need!

*NOTE that this recipe uses regular sized measuring cups, NOT the tiny ELB cup, unless specified.*

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Ingredients:

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon minced ginger

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 teaspoon gochugaru (use less (1/4 tsp) if you don’t want it too spicy)

1 teaspoon minced, dried onion

1/3 cup beef broth

1-2 teaspoons gochujang

1 teaspoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

1/3 cup ground beef

1/2 cup cubed tofu

Chopped green onions, for serving

3 ELB cups water in the base

1. Mix everything but the beef and tofu in the big or medium sized ELB bowl. mix well to blend all the flavors together and dissolve the cornstarch.

2. Add the beef and tofu and grntly stir to mix.

3. Place the bowl in the ELB base. * you can also prepare rice in the small bowl using 2 ELB cups rice, rinsed and drained with2 ELB cups water.

4. Add 3 ELB cups of water to the base, cover and let steam until it shuts off, about 1 hour.

5. Carefully open ELB, check food for doneness and adjust seasoning to taste.

6. Serve hot and enjoy!

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Electric Lunchbox # 62: Chili

Cool weather means chili, stews, corn bread, oyster crackers, casseroles, and all sorts of comfort food to me! So I just had to try making them in the ELB!

Of course, I will be posting them here as I get it right. I hope you try them out as the weather changes, to keep your tummy happy and warm!

First up is Chili!

I make it with both ground beef and beans. This recipe is a mixture of several recipes I had been using, that somehow became my staple. Chili is a very forgiving recipe so feel free to add and remove ingredients as you like. However, I encourage you to try it this way the first time you make it. And of course, I hope you’ll like it!

*NOTE that this recipe uses regular sized measuring cups, NOT the tiny ELB cup, unless specified.*

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1/3 – 1/2 cup ground beef

1/3 – 1/2 cup canned beans (mix of black beans, pinto beans and kidney beans)

1 1/2 tablespoons chopped onions

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1 cup canned crushed or diced tomatoes

1/2 tablespoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon paprika

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 – 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon powder

1 teaspoon fish sauce

1 teaspoon cocoa powder

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1/4 cup water

1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Cayenne pepper, optional, if you want it spicier

Procedure:

1. Mix everything in the big ELB bowl.

2. Set onto the base. Add 3 ELB cups water to the base, cover and let steam until it shuts off, about 1 hour.

3. Carefully open the ELB and remove the bowl. Stir and correct seasonings.

4. Serve hot with chips, sour cream, shredded cheese, and all the fixings you want.

You can also serve this with my Bacon Drippings Cornbread which I’ll post next! Get the recipe here – https://athomewiththeresa.com/2020/10/26/electric-lunchbox-63-bacon-grease-cornbread/

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Electric Lunchbox #61: Stuffed Bellpeppers

Stuffed bell peppers, with a Japanese twist. This is how I make our stuffed peppers at home to bake in the oven, but I adapted it to be made in the ELB.

Bull-dog sauce is the sweet, salty sauce served with Tonkatsu or Chicken Katsu when you order it from the restaurant. Mix it with the ketchup and you’ve got an extra delicious layer to this dish!

It was a tight squeeze, but I managed to fit 2 filled peppers in the large ELB bowl. Each was a half of a large bell pepper. Depending on your hunger level, it can be a meal for 1 or 2.

If you prep this the night before, please keep it cold until just before steaming, for safety.

I hope you’ll like it!

*Please note that the word “cup” in any of my electric lunchbox recipe refers to the little ELB cup included with the lunchbox. It holds 40ml.*

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You’ll need the following for the stuffed peppers:

1/3 – 1/2 cup ground beef

1 large egg, beaten

2 tablespoons chopped onions

1 tablespoon ketchup

1 tablespoon Bull-dog sauce

1/3 – 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

1/4 teaspoon salt

Pinch of ground black pepper

1 large green bell pepper, cut in half crosswise, insides removed (or 2 smaller ones, tops and insides removed)

For topping:

1 – 2 tablespoons Bull-dog sauce

1 – 2 tablespoons ketchup

This is a big green bell pepper, cut in half, seeds and insides removed.

Procedure:

1. In a small bowl, combine beef, egg, onion, 1 tablespoon ketchup, 1 tablespoon Bull-dog sauce, panko, salt, and pepper.

2. Stuff mixture evenly between the green bell peppers.

3. Place the stuffed peppers in the big bottom bowl of the ELB, it will be a snug fit. Push, push!

4. Cover bowl with foil and place in the ELB base. Add 3 ELB cups water to the base, cover and let steam until it shuts off, about 1 hour.

5. Carefully remove the cover and the foil. Check meat for doneness, adding more time if needed.

* I use this thermometer to check if the ground meat is done, 160F according to the handy chart that’s printed on it. Perfect so I don’t misplace it!*

Bull-dog sauce…and I think I need to buy more ketchup!

6. In a small bowl, combine equal amounts of Bull-dog sauce and ketchup. About 1 tablespoon each is good enough unless you want a lot of sauce.

7. Spoon sauce on top of the stuffed bell peppers and serve hot! Enjoy!

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Electric Lunchbox #60: Macaroni and Cheese

Macaroni and Cheese! Who knew it would take me forever to get this recipe right!? I mean, mac and cheese!!!!

I got a lot of requests from you guys for Mac and Cheese made in the ELB.

And as it is one of my son’s favorite food ever, I had already been experimenting since before the requests came in. This recipe took that long!

It definitely tested my patience, as recipe after recipe, it failed. Too clumpy. Too watery. Noodles undercooked. Noodles over cooked. Too bland. Too salty….and on and on.

Should’ve sprinkled it with something colorful for the photo op!

So I started working on it at least once a week. In the process, I’d ran out of grated cheese, or cream, or butter, so I had to wait again until grocery day comes around for another round of testing.

This recipe is my latest one in the quest for a good, one bowl mac and cheese made in the ELB. Although not as smooth as I would like it to be, it is one that I cannot stop eating. Even my son said “you know I want more too, right?” So I believe we have a winner!

The cheese I ended up using. So good!

You can definitely replace the cheese with sharp cheddar or any mix that you like if you want, but know that this combo is soooo good!

Also, please read the recipe through before making it. Specially my note about the salt, as I do not want you to have your mac and cheese ready only to realize that it’s too salty to eat.

*NOTE that this recipe uses regular sized measuring cups, NOT the tiny ELB cup, unless specified.*

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Ingredients:

1/2 cup uncooked macaroni

1/2 cup water

1 cup grated cheese (I used a blend of Swiss and Gruyere cheese as that is what I had in the fridge 😋)

1/4 cup milk

2 tablespoons heavy cream

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon cream cheese

1/4 teaspoon minced, dried onion

1/4 teaspoon dry mustard powder

Dash of ground black pepper

Dash of turmeric powder, optional (this is just for color – if you want it more yellow)

1/4 teaspoon salt (hold off adding the salt until after the dish is cooked – remember that you can always add salt but you cannot remove it. Some cheeses are saltier than others.)

1. Place all the ingredients, except salt, in the big ELB bowl, in the order listed.

2. Place the bowl in the ELB base.

3. Add 3 ELB cups water in the base, cover and let steam until it shuts off, about 1 hour.

4. Carefully open the cover and stir the mac and cheese. Check if macaroni is cooked through and adjust seasoning, adding the salt if needed.

5. Serve hot! Enjoy!

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