I’m making lunch today and I had a thought to document the process. Bistek Tagalog is one of my absolute favorite Filipino dishes, and it’s very simple to make yourself so that’s a huge bonus. Now, I don’t remember where I got the recipe that I use. It’s been a note in my phone for over a year, but it works so that’s great! 😆
The ingredient list for this recipe is pretty short: soy sauce, calamansi (Philippine lime), pepper, beef tenderloin (I used breakfast steak), onions, and oil and butter. Calamansi is a key ingredient in this recipe, and although you can substitute it with lemon, there’s nothing like this citrus fruit from my homeland. 😊
So we start by putting together 1/4 cup calamansi juice, 1/3 cup soy sauce, and 1/4 tsp black pepper. Into this mixture, we put 1/2 kg of the beef, make sure they’re cut up into smaller pieces, although the size depends on you, and let it marinade for 15-20 minutes. I let it marinade for an hour or two, although I don’t know if this changes anything.
After marinading, put some oil and butter in a pan and then sear the beef. Don’t forget to set aside the marinade as this will be used later on. This is the longest step in this recipe because the meat should be seared one layer at a time. I cooked 3/4 kg of beef and it took me about 30 minutes to sear everything–it really depends on the size of your pan and the amount you’re searing.
When all the beef is seared, set them aside and put the onions in the pan, sliced into rings, and cook them until they’re translucent. I like onions so I put in a large whole one, but the amount depends on your preference. When the onions are translucent, put the beef back into the pan and mix them in with the onions. Pour the marinade into the pan, as well as 1/4 cup water, and let them simmer for about 2 to 3 minutes.
That’s it! Pretty simple right? This is a classic Filipino dish that I think you will enjoy. It’s savory and kind of sour, with some sweetness coming from the onions, and it pairs very well with white rice. Try it yourself and let me know what you think. 😁
’til next time,
P.S. – I had to leave right after cooking and then chowed down as soon as I got home so I wasn’t able to take a photo of the final product. Sorry about that. 😅