Tokwa at Baboy or Tokwa’t Baboy (Beancurd and pork) is a typical Filipino appetizer dish.It usually includes pork ears,pork belly and deep-fried tofu,and is dipped in a mixture of soy sauce,pork,broth,vinegar,chopped white onions,scallions,and red chili peppers.It is normally eaten with rice porridge as a side dish.”Tokwa” is the Hokkien word for firm beancurd,while “baboy” is the Tagalog word for pork.
 
Hello there! Yes,thats the only history I could tell about my recipe today.I tried my best to find some more,but really I couldn’t find anything except that.Well,for a change my introduction is kinda short because I would like to call my blog as blah..blah..blah.. lol! Dont scamper away please..I know its kinda morbid to read pork ears or pork face..but stay on and read.Like most of you,I dont and I wont go for pork ears or pork face although I heard that using these parts of pork meat has a very delicious result.One thing for sure there are many Filipinos like me who also would not use pork ears or pork face.
 
Now lets change the topic because I dont want you to lose appetite.Tokwa’t Baboy is a popular side dish/appetizer in the  Philippines.It is also considered as the traditional accompaniment for arrozcaldo,lugaw,pancit palabok and pancit luglog.(For more information about pancit,you can check my post Pancit Bihon.)Tokwa at Baboy is commonly served also with our local beer, gin or whisky.Later on it became a viand or as I always say,best eaten with mountain of rice!In my case,back then I rarely enjoyed it and in fact it was always out of my list because I am not big on sweet and sour/sour and salty food.The reason why it took me years before I was able to make my standard recipe for sweet and sour.(Speaking of sweet and sour sauce,you can check it in my Sweet and Sour Pork.)Several years ago,a fast food chain named Chowking became popular in the Philippines and up to now it is and it served mostly Chinese style food.One particular dish that I started to patronize was Tokwa at Baboy.At last,I found my match..I appreciated the magic of Tokwat at Baboy this time and that brought me to make my own version.
 
Here is my recipe using fried pork belly instead of broiled pig ears or  pork face..agghhh…sorry…lol!I got inspired with a recipe years ago,I forgot the original recipe cause you know me,I cook,I copy,I change and I formulate according to my own taste.The usual way is just to cook the meat and cut them into cubes,then serve with fried tofu and sauce.In my case,I cooked the meat two ways,by simmering until it becomes tender and then I fry it.
Ingredients:
500 grams pork belly slices
4 pcs firm tofu(comes in a pack of 4)
1 bay leaf
1 head garlic
1 head onion
1 stalk of celery
1 small carrot
some peppercorns
a dash of salt
2 cups of vegetable oil
For the sauce:
1 tbsp grated garlic
1 onion chopped
3 tbsp soy bean paste
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp light soy sauce
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp white vinegar
1/2 cup meat broth
3 tbsp brown sugar
1 pc hot chili pepper chopped(optional)
 
Take out the tokwa and rinse,then put in a glass bowl with water.Set aside in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
Put the meat in a sauce pan together with the ff.ingredients:bay leaf,whole head of garlic,whole onion,stalk of celery,whole carrot,some peppercorns and a dash of salt.Add some water just enough to cover all the ingredients.
Bring to a boil and cook by simmering for one hour.Transfer the meat to a colander to drain excess broth,then pat with paper towel,let it cool and set aside in the fridge for at least one hour.
In a glass jar with lid,put all the ingredients for the sauce,mix and shake lightly until the sugar is dissolved then set aside.Do this ahead of time so that the flavor is enhanced and developed.
Cut the tofu in any form you like…either 1/2 cubes or like mine,I just sliced the tofu into 4 and fry it that way and then cut it again once its cooked.Start frying the meat first(by batches)followed by tofu.Drain them both in paper towel or use a strainer or colander.Let cool and then proceed on cutting them again.(into cubes)
In a big bowl,combine the meat and tofu and now let the magic begin…you can pour the sauce on this bowl..or you can just use individual bowls and pour some sauce on top..like dressing your salad but lets just say a soupy salad..lol! pork and tofu should be wet enough to absorb the fabulous taste of the sauce.The secret lies on how you cook your meat, the way you fry your tofu,the way the meat is fried and dont forget, above all..the secret of success is with the sauce!
                                                                           

My precious milky white tofu has transformed into brown,crispy yet soft inside,I prefer to slice and fry my tofu like this..then I can just decide what to do next
                                                                         

Hmmmnn..dont run away,this is my very unusual Tokwa at Baboy..lol!..you know why? cause I use Pork Belly and I dont just fry them,I cook them first by simmering,the combination of veggies and a little of spices makes the meat tender and tasty..see that, its now golden brown and crispy!

                                                                          

Here comes the secret of success..no matter how brown and crispy your tofu is,the combination of veggies and a little of spices may be great,the pork belly is brown,crispy and tender…the end result will be judged based on your sauce:chaos of tender sour taste, a little sweet but not salty,with the touch of soya bean paste,soy sauce both light and dark and the combination of garlic onion…Hmmmnnn..lovely!
                                                                             

Take a look..individual bowl, some tofu,some pork and lavish on with the saucy,soupy dressing of a sauce…thats how we eat our Pork and Tofu..I hope you can try this one..a rare chaos with magic of simplicity.
This is my first serving…you can also go for tofu only..
                                                                       

And this is my second serving(although I only eat tofu because I rarely eat Pork Meat)…this dish is somewhat a challenge to me because I normally dont eat this and I dont think about it at all..until that day in a fast food chain..I summoned enough courage and asked for a single serving..and that changed my perception and it made me crave to discover the secret behind the magical sauce..Now,come over and experience the chaos in my kitchen..Lets eat,lets giggle and lets be merry!Have a blessed week to everyone.

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Come and join me in my blog as I discover the world of Filipino Fusion Cuisine.These are all tried and tested recipes in my kitchen, a fusion of cuisines that intrigues me and my palate.Everything I write, post and share is a product of my exploration, my research, and done in my kitchen. Please Come in. Enjoy and Have a nice stay. You are all welcome.