Kare Kare (Oxtail Stew)

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Kare Kare (Oxtail Stew)

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1 Oxtail with skin cut between bone segments
¼ cup cooking oil
1 teaspoon Peppercorns
3 Bay Leaves
enough to cover the meat for boiling Water
¼ cup cooking oil
1 tablespoon Garlic crushed
1 cup onions chopped
3 tablespoons shrimp paste prepared bagoong Alamang
¼ cup roasted Peanuts pounded till fine
2 teaspoons uncooked sticky rice grains Malagkit rice
¼ cup annatto (achuete) water
6 cups broth from oxtail cooking liquid
1 teaspoon black pepper freshly ground
Salt to taste
1 banana heart the yellow kind
1 eggplant (Asian variety)
5 pcs long pole beans
12 pcs okra
  • Medium


  • Meat:

  • Sauce:

  • Vegetable:



Kare kare is a Filipino traditional celebration food.

How to Make Kare Kare:

  1. In a cast iron frying pan, pour the oil and heat till almost smoking.
  2. Sear the oxtail cuts on all sides till brown; set aside. Fry in batches.
  3. In a casserole, place the seared oxtail and add enough water to cover the oxtail.
  4. Add in the peppercorns and bay leaves and slowly simmer till the meat is very tender (this takes about 2 hours plus).
  5. Add water if the oxtail liquid begins to diminish.
  6. When tender, remove the meat from the cooking liquid; set aside and save the broth for the sauce.
  7. In a large and heavy casserole, over a low heat, pour in the oil and warm.
  8. When warm, add the crushed garlic and sauté till light brown.
  9. Add the chopped onions and continue sautéing till the onions are wilted and transparent.
  10. Then add the annatto liquid and continue sautéing till the smell of the annatto liquid is fragrant and not metallic smelling.
  11. Then add the shrimp paste and continue sautéing for 2 minutes.
  12. Add the peanut paste and mix well.
  13. Pour in the broth and continue simmering for about 15 to 20 minutes.
  14. Using a hand held blender, blender the broth mixture till it is smooth.
  15. Taste the broth and adjust; you can add more shrimp paste, salt and pepper. (For more peanut flavor, you could add 1-2 tablespoons of Filipino-style peanut butter, but it will make your Kare Kare a bit sweet.)
  16. Sprinkle in the roasted rice and keep stirring till the broth becomes slightly thick.
  17. Continue to blender the broth to remove any lumps.
  18. When the sauce tastes good, place the cooked oxtail pieces in the sauce and simmer, stirring continuously to prevent the sauce sticking to the bottom. Simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes.
  19. When ready to serve, place the cooked vegetables into the mixture; simmer for 3 minutes and serve with the shrimp paste sauce (sautéed bagoong).
  20. You may also serve the vegetables separately.
  21. Serve with steaming hot white rice.

How to Make the Sauce:

  1. Place two tablespoons of annatto seeds in a cup.
  2. Mix ¼ teaspoon lye water with the annatto seeds.
  3. Add ½ cup boiling water and leave to stand for ½ hour.
  4. Stir it and then strain to get ¼ cup of liquid.

How to Cook the Vegetables:

  1. To get to the tender heart of the banana heart, remove the hard outer cover.
  2. Heat some water in a saucepan and add 1 teaspoon salt.
  3. Cut the banana heart in half (crosswise) and immediately place in the boiling water and cook till tender.
  4. Remove from the water and cut into 1-inch thick round slices.
  5. Cut 1 eggplant (Asian variety) into 2-inch lengths and steam it till cooked, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  6. Cut 5 pieces long pole beans into 2-inch lengths and steam them till cooked, about 5 minutes.
  7. Finally, steam 12 pieces of okra for 5 minutes.

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