Its head is slightly smaller than most but what it lacks in that area, it more than makes up in body size. Ocean grown and fishpond grown bangus in Alaminos are equally plump and juicy, giving a silent promise of delicious recipes. It’s a delight to sample every dish made with this ocean gem, but its far relaxing to come and taste the home goodness of the usual recipes like sinigang and relleno. Both are perfect treats during a picnic or cuddling at home in rainy season.
SINIGANG NA BANGUS
1 Medium sized Bangus (clean, scaled and sliced into 2), 8 tamarind (sampaloc), 2 pieces okra (cut into 2), 2 pieces eggplant (cut into rings), 1cup kangkong or camote tops (cut into 2" long), 1 big Onion (diced), 2 medium sized tomatoes (quartered), 3 pieces long green pepper, salt and patis, 5 cups water
1. Boil tamarind either in water or in ½ cup of rice washing until soft. Strain juices and set side.
2. Then, let the water and tamarind juice boil.
3. Add the tomatoes, onion, okra, eggplant, and kangkong or camote. Lower fire.
4. When the vegetables are almost cooked, add the fish.
5. Season with salt and patis to taste.
6. Let it simmer for a few minutes. You can also add 2 or 3 green peppers, then, simmer a bit more.
1 medium sized bangus, 1 onion, 2 tomatoes, 1 clove garlic, 1 egg (beaten), ½ cup peas, 2 calamansi
1. Clean the bangus and slit its back open. Remove its backbone and scrape off its meat. Rid of all spines.
2. Add salt and pepper to the flaked meat. Set aside.
3. Sautee garlic, onion and tomatoes, then, add the fish meat. Cook well for 5 minutes.
4. Add calamansi juice and peas before removing from heat. Then, add the beaten egg.
5. Stuff the fish skin with the mixture and sew up the opening. Fry in deep hot fat until fish is golden brown.
*To give it a little punch, soak the bangus skin in soy, calamansi and some pepper as you cook the fish meat.
How to debone
1. Wash the bangus, split it butterfly style, then clean it, removing the gills, internal organs and blood. Then with a sharp knife, remove the backbone and dorsal fins.
2. Then, with a forceps, begin deboning the bangus, starting with the spine, then work towards the large spines in the fish’s belly activity, and continue removing the small spines embedded in the meat.
After deboning, combine calamansi or lime, soy sauce, salt and black pepper. Marinate the deboned bangus in the mixture. You can also add some vinegar and chopped garlic for added taste. Let it sit for hours or overnight, depending on the recipe you have in mind.
Tinapang bangus is an increasingly popular favorite here in Alaminos City. The firm, juicy meat of bangus smoked to perfection, letting out that appealing, irresistible flavor that is all its own, is far tastier than most regularly smoked fish. Its thick aroma is enticing, making you want to savor the secret behind its richness.
Basic ingredients: Salt and water, bangus
1. Clean the fish, removing the gills and the internal organs through the soft belly, then, wash thoroughly to get rid of the blood and slime.
2. Then, combine 1 part salt and 3 parts water, and soak the bangus for 2 hours. Drain. Then, wrap bangus in aluminum foil. Set wrapped bangus in the pressure cooker, set pressure at 10 lbs. For average time of 1 ½ to 2 hours.
3. After processing, dry bangus under the sun for 3 to 48 minutes, then, finally, smoke fish for 30 to 45 minutes or until golden brown.