12 Apr2012

This ventured into the realm of satay, but not quite. Since I was fooling around with variations on Filipino pork barbecue on a stick, I decided it might be nice to try a version with freshly pressed coconut cream, some pungent shrimp paste and some heat from a batch of homemade sambal.

The cream was supposed to add richness and hopefully keep the pork moist. The shrimp paste to provide that hint of funkiness and salt. And the sambal some spice, of course.

Add some brown sugar and some vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Mix this all up and let it marinate for an hour or two before piercing onto bamboo barbecue sticks that have been pre-soaked in water.

The coconut milk had this unexpected “whitening” effect on the meat… hmmm, I might be onto something here… instead of all those whitening soaps and creams, people can just come for coconut cream baths… :) With the leftover marinade, we brought this to a boil to create a pungent basting sauce free of cooties.

Baste two or three times and keep a close watch on the meat so it doesn’t get too burnt and bitter…

…it was looking really good at this point. And I LIKE the natural colors, without the help of food coloring so present in local barbecues these days…

…the results? Pretty good. The meat was reasonably moist and extremely tasty. The coconut cream muted the other flavors, but the bagoong and a bit of the sambal still shone through. Maybe I should have added MORE sambal for a little more spice. I would say this was a 7.50-7.75/10.00 on the Marketman BBQ scale. If you like the flavor profile of coconut cream, bagoong and chili, I would recommend you try this. If you are a die-hard sweet sour tangy salty classic barbecue fan, this may not be for you.

Pork BBQ, Version 1, here.



  1. louinsanfran says:

    a spark of creativity manifested. i get excited seeing pork bbq on skewers everytime, having some idea of what’s coming. but to be surprised by something different like this might be like getting involved with somebody new.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 5:43 am


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  3. AM says:

    Oh my goodness, Mr. MM… you are truly an inspiration. Just wanted to let you know that for Easter we had shrimp ginataan (crab was not available) and BBQ pork sticks, a simple dish to celebrate Easter. I’ve also tried your recipe for fried artichokes which was delish. Tonight I’m thinking of preparing coconut soup with chicken. All this recipes with coconut is truly great. Thank you.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 5:51 am

  4. josephine says:

    You might really be onto something with the whitening bit, good start-up idea? My favorites are the billboard ads for “placenta” whitening soaps. Balut plus gata plus bbq…? No, seriously, looks delicious MM.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 7:47 am

  5. amy says:

    I’m sticking to your version 1, that was the closest b-b-q to the street vendor version that I’ve ever made, thanks to your recipe and tips:) I only used 2 tablespoons ketchup for the basting sauce, didn’t care for the intense orange color either. And my American husband loved it, he ate more than I did! Thank you for sharing what you have, you bring me home every time you post something I enjoyed and loved when I was there :)

    Apr 12, 2012 | 7:59 am

  6. millet says:

    coconut cream baths! hahaha..you had me laughing over breakfast. i just watched a show on the asian food channel featuring the biggest sate factory in singapore (or was it malaysia) that has machines to do everything, right down to skewering the meat!

    am definitely trying this. thanks, MM!

    Apr 12, 2012 | 8:17 am

  7. Footloose says:

    Yes, this is essentially the satay approach and serving this with satay sauce will make it a full-fledged satay. When we were too distracted to think ahead and too lazy to even consider slicing, marinating, waiting, impaling and then teary-eyedly fanning the smoky grill for Filipino style pork barbecue, satay, either Malay or Thai, was our easy default grilled skewered meat; always available with minimal effort and on short notice.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 8:32 am

  8. PITS, MANILA says:

    My eyes are feasting on the toasted fat and hoping the others would just take the meaty part and discard all those last pieces for me to take! Thinking now of turmeric powder for some of that yellow color. And a siding of sliced fresh jerkins marinating on vinaigrette.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 9:39 am

  9. aleeh co says:

    looks yummy! we’ll definitely have some bbq this coming saturday. our version of pork bbq marinade includes calamansi, soy sauce, sugar, hot chilies, black pepper, lots of garlic, onions, roasted sesame seeds and peanut butter… i just thought maybe we could add coconut milk next time… looking forward to more bbq versions ;D

    Apr 12, 2012 | 10:17 am

  10. ConnieC says:

    Yes MM, your ginataang bbq looks kind of anemic for my eyes that have been programmed for color, like a little girl drawn to picking all the red maraschinos in a fruit salad.
    Agree with Pits, perhaps a little bit of turmeric or paprika will add a natural coloring without necessarily interfering or fighting with the flavors.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 11:04 am

  11. iya says:

    Thanks for this post! kayang-kaya ko itong gawin! :p Can’t wait to try this! What sidedish po do you recommend?

    Apr 12, 2012 | 11:27 am

  12. Sleepless in Seattle says:

    You had me at fresh pressed:):):) coconut that is.. love the satay style. will definitely try this. Yey!! for V2.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 1:41 pm

  13. erleen says:

    Grilled Bicol Express :)

    Apr 12, 2012 | 4:03 pm

  14. betty q. says:

    Ted: you mentioned you used pineapple juice in your marinade to tenderize the meat as well. Bear in mind that the enzyme bromelin is only present in the juice in its RAW form as in FRESH pineapple juice. Once it is processed as in canned pineapple juice, the processing kills the enzyme….same goes for papaya or kiwi.

    Apr 12, 2012 | 11:08 pm

  15. bakerwannabe says:

    @Footloose, do you mix your stay sauce with coddled egg?

    Apr 13, 2012 | 12:13 am

  16. gensanite says:

    gata as barbecue marinade… hmmm… very interesting…

    Apr 13, 2012 | 12:45 am

  17. Footloose says:

    @Bakerwannabe, what my Malaysian Chinese colleagues from work showed me started out similar to our lechon sauce, i.e., lots of oil to sauté garlic and finely chopped shallots but departs from it with the addition of dried and fresh chili, roasted blachan (a chunk wrapped in foil and baked in a medium oven for no more than ten mins.), roasted blanched peanuts crushed in an almirez (or buzzed in a food processor), kakang gata and palm sugar. This is quickly cooked in that sequence until a bit denser looking than salsa ng lechon and seasoned with salt and fresh milled black pepper to taste.

    Apr 13, 2012 | 5:31 am

  18. betty q. says:

    MM…coconut is a natural remedy used as skin bleaching agent…www.stbotanica.co.uk

    Apr 13, 2012 | 6:05 am

  19. Betchay says:

    I will try this….I love anything cooked with coconut milk/cream….looks so yummy.

    Apr 13, 2012 | 8:27 am

  20. Jade186 says:

    *Thumbs up* and *Like* !!!

    Apr 13, 2012 | 4:02 pm

  21. EbbaBlue says:

    This is how I marinate my barbecue too, but with lesser coconunt cream ratio. And with the left over sauce, I add a a teaspon of banana ketchup for that color and tomato flavor.

    And yes Ms. BettyQ, I do slather my legs foot with coconut cream.

    Apr 13, 2012 | 7:49 pm

  22. ted says:

    @Betty, thanks and that thought made me do more wiki’s, and found out that the stem of the pineapple (middle portion) had the most concentration of bromelain. I will try crushing that and add to my marinade instead of the canned juice.

    Apr 13, 2012 | 11:13 pm

  23. betty q. says:

    Ted…since you are at it, might as well pour some of that fresh pineapple juice to your tocino so you have no need to cook tocino in water first. But try cooking it by barbecuing it first on a really hot grill till you get the grill marks only. You have that smokey hamonado taste and then finish it in the oven…with garlic sinangag for breakast on the week-end!

    Apr 14, 2012 | 12:25 am

  24. Katrina says:

    This is something I’d surely enjoy — I love the combination of coconut milk, bagoong and pork. Have you tried the Binagoongan with gata in XO46? Sarap!

    Apr 17, 2012 | 2:39 am


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