The moment Ber hits the calendar, many Filipinos around the word starts reminiscing Christmas, a few already started Christmas countdowns and fewer still could not simply wait and oh no tofu, went ahead and started greeting everybody else, (°_^) Merry Christmas! Social networks , read: facebook...twitter...multiply etc are filled with it. After all September, puts the hot and sultry summer to its end and brings a crispier and chillier weather as well as a fresher and an almost too familiar waffle and cinnamon whiff in the air ( hello Weinachtmarkt or rather hello olfactory hallucinations?) . Plus September happens to rythme and chime like December. I hope these are acceptable and good enough excuses to celebrate and be extra merry- That's how much we marvel the birth of baby Jesus so haters look to your left if you please.
Being a true blooded Filipino ( read: 100% Ilonggo blood slashing merrily in my constricted veins, thanks deep fried lumpia!), I literally have to hold on to my knickers, stop myself from jumping into the bandwagon and started yelley yowling Hoh!Hoh!Hoh! However, I did silently but gratefully celebrated the coming Ber at home, in my kitchen...with lots and lots of Embutido. Getting lost yet? Fast forwarding fanatical babbling, Christmas in the Philippines is celebrated with a bountiful feast. That's extensive spread waiting and begging to be savored at Noche buena . Like the three kings of Jerusalem, Pinoy table on the eve of Christmas is not celebrated without the presence of hamon ( ham), queso de bola ( Phil. cheese ball) and yes Embutido! We might not necessary have them all three, but the third king is almost always present in every Christmas table back in the Philippines. So no too- early-x-mas-greetings from me to you, just a silent deed that warrant a good meal that reminds me of home. Let cooks some Embudido, shall we?!
In as much as I wanted to make something authentic, being far away from home also means missing an ingredient or two. Finding pickle relish, for instance is a bit of a problem . Although cucumber here comes in all sizes and color, fresh, bottled, jarred, salted, sweetened or seasoned, they don't come in sweet pickle relish form. Not in Germany, no sir. Now sing with me! It's like ten thousand spoon but all you need is a fork..I said yeah, yeah, yeaah, isn't it ironic?'' . Okeeey, I think I have to stop here before I completely lost it. Anyway, its just a minor glitch. Like missing a key component in a dish ever stopped me before. Read crabless, chillie-less singapore chilli crab recipe. Here's how I came up with a pork embutido with a german twist anyway.
In a big mixing bowl goes 500 g of ground pork, add 1 small shredded carrots, half a cup of raisins, half red paprika, cut into small cubes and half yellow paprika. If you could make your embutido as colorful as a rainbow, the award goes to you! I then added 1 finely chopped medium sized onion, 3 cloves of finely chopped garlic. And since I'm missing the pickle relish which adds a sweet soury component into this dish, I used half a cup of Sauerkraut with pineapple instead. Six slices of smoked Schinken or ham were thinly sliced and then added into the bowl. A dash of pepper and salt were added into the mixture. To bind all ingredients together, I then added 2 eggs . Season with few drops of soy sauce and add in 50 g of grated Parmesan cheese. Test the consistency, if it end up too mushy, add in a tablespoon or two of flour.
Mix everything thoroughly until well combined and homogeneous. Scoop a handful of embutido mixture into an aluminium foil. Shape it into a log, roll tightly and seal by twisting both ends.Yield: 3 to 4 embutidos . If you have a steamer that could hold all these, steam it for about an hour. Let embutido cool off completely before cutting and serving. To serve: either eat it cold or simply sear it for a couple of minutes in the pan with a bit of oil until it turns brown. If you are Pinoy, eat it with rice..lots and lots of rice and hey don't forget your banana ketchup while you're at it. Enjoy!