Tomato sauce isn’t alien to Filipino cuisine. A lot of our festive favorites rely on the addition of the thick, concentrated sauce to bring them to life. There’s mechado, menudo, afritada, pochero—even the children’s party staple Filipino spaghetti. All of these dishes require a good dose of tomato sauce to make them shine.
But with our everyday food? Not so much. Enter Del Monte Tomato Sauce. Wanting to revolutionize Philippine cuisine, they came up with a selection of everyday recipes given the tomato sauce treatment. Think pork sinigang and beef bulalo, given a healthy helping of tomato sauce to make them more flavorful. Surprising? Definitely, but in a good way. These dishes, while spectacular on their own, are given interesting, new interpretations. A Red Revolution, really.
Despite my initial skepticism, my successful attempt at cooking Red Sinigang left me open to new tomato sauce-laced recipes. The Red Pesang Bangus recipe caught my eye because it was simple enough yet was interesting. How will tomato sauce go with the gingery classic Pesa?
Like the classic recipe, Del Monte’s Red Pesang Bangus relies on loads of ginger to cut the fishiness while providing a strong, refreshing bite. Adding tomato sauce, it turns out, adds depth to the traditional flavor, bringing out a fuller, heartier taste that had a mellow tang and just a hint of fruity sweetness. Not too strongly that it overpowers the pesa flavor, but enough to tell you that this isn’t your Lola’s Pesang Bangus.
Del Monte Red Pesang Bangus
- 1 medium onion, sliced
- 3 Tbsps ginger strips
- 2 cups rice washing liquid (hugas bigas) or water
- 1 200g pouch Del Monte Original Style Tomato Sauce?
- 2 1/2 patis (fish sauce)
- 1 500g bangus (milkfish), cleaned and sliced into 5
- 2 bunches (250g) pechay tagalog
- In a heavy saucepan, boil together onion, ginger, rice washing, patis and Del Monte Tomato Sauce. Simmer for ten minutes.
- Add bangus and simmer for another ten minutes.
- Add pechay. Simmer until wilted. Serve.
Looking for more revolutionary cooking ideas? Check out the Del Monte site for more recipes featuring everyday dishes given the Del Monte Tomato Sauce treatment. Just look for the Tomato-based, Tomato Best badge.