Pork menudo

Pork menudo

Menudong baboy

7000 Islands
Jana Liebenstein

One of Spain’s greatest culinary legacies to the Philippines was its tomato-based stews. To foreigners, Hispanic names — menudo, afritada, kaldereta — evoke the exotic. To a Filipino, they bring back memories of big family fiestas and the excitement of bustling eateries known as karinderias.

Menudo shares a lot in common with its Spanish-derived counterparts, but is less soupy then afritada and not as rich as kaldereta. Countless variations exist, but you can spot menudo’s chequerboard look. Admittedly, it is time consuming, but once the prep is done, it comes together easily.


Quantity Ingredient
80ml vegetable oil
600g pork loin medallions, trimmed and cut into 1.5 cm cubes
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 onion, chopped
650g large roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
375ml chicken stock
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 bay leaves
1 large potato, peeled and cut into 1.5 cm cubes
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 1.5 cm cubes
1 capsicum, seeded and cut into 1.5 cm cubes
100g tinned chickpeas, drained
steamed rice, to serve


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil in a large, deep saucepan over medium–high heat. Add half of the pork and cook for 4 minutes, stirring until browned all over. Transfer to a bowl once cooked and repeat with another 1 tablespoon of the oil and the remaining pork.
  2. Heat the remaining vegetable oil in the cleaned pan and cook the garlic for 30 seconds, or until fragrant. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, stirring until soft. Add the tomatoes and cook for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they have broken down.
  3. Drain the pork juices and return the meat to the pan with the stock, soy sauce, fish sauce and bay leaves. Season with freshly cracked black pepper, bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low–medium and cook for 10 minutes.
  4. Add the potato, carrot and capsicum, and cook for 20 minutes. Add the chickpeas and cook for a further 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender, the pork is cooked through and the sauce has reduced. Season with salt flakes and pepper, to taste, and serve with steamed rice.

Where does it come from?

  • It is not clear where menudo came from. Its name can be found in both Spanish and Mexican cookery. In Spain, menudo refers to tripe; in Mexico, it is a stew also made with tripe. Its name is likely derived from the Spanish word for small, a reference to the bite-sized ingredients used.
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