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Laswa

Mention laswa and a merry mix of vegetables would come to mind. This is a perfect "realization" of the Filipino folk song "Bahay Kubo" which narrates an abundance of vegetables beside the traditional Filipino hut. Laswa has no definite list of ingredients nor way or cooking as it is just "stewing" available vegetables, not only from the garden, but what's inside your fridge or you bought from the market.It ranges from the simple all vegetable dish to ones having seafood like shrimps, crabs and more. But in the end it all boils (pun intended) down to what you prefer at the same time, what is available.
Here's a simple recipe for Laswa

Ingredients
  • Squash, cubed
  • Eggplant, sliced
  • Patola, sliced
  • Okra, slcied
  • Saluyot / Malunggay / Alugbati / Kolitis, choose one among these green leafy vegetables
  • Sitaw String beans, cut into 2-3 inches long
  • Papaya, unripe, sliced
  • Sigarilyas. sliced
  • Puso ng Sagin, chopped
  • Shrimps / Crabs / Dried and salted fish like dilis, kalkag (dried alamang) or daing / Bago-ngon (local snail), choose one
  • Salt or Bago-ong
  • Garlic, crushed
  • Water
Procedure
  1. Wash all vegetables thoroughly. You don't have to complete all the vegetables listed when you cook.
  2. In a pan, place you choice of seafood at the bottom and add a little water.
  3. Arrange all the vegetables in layers, with the hard vegetables at the bottom and leafy vegetables on top.
  4. Add garlic and salt/bago-ong. No need or use a little amount of salt when you are using dried fish.
  5. Cook for about 15-20 minutes or until the hardest vegetables are cooked.
  6. Make final taste adjustments. No need for it to be savory or overpowering. Just let out the natural taste of vegetables and the seafood.
Laswa is a perfect partner for grilled and fried food like fish and pork. But on its own, it's already one healthy and nutritious treat.


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