Pancit Tuguegarao (Noodles)

photo(319)You’ve probably never heard of Tuguegarao before, unless you are from the Philippines.  It is the capital of the province of Cagayan in Northern Philippines. But if you follow the television show ‘Survivors,’ the current season was filmed in Cagayan.

You probably already know that there are many versions of the noodle dish, and Philippine noodles, or pancit, are no exception.  So, here’s one more Filipino version called Pancit Tuguegarao, named of course after the capital of Cagayan.  It is also known as Pancit Batil Patong (Batil meaning to beat and patong meaning to put on top). This particular version is quite unique because it uses minced carabao (water buffalo) meat and is usually topped by fried eggs, reminiscent of the Hawaiian loco moco.

Understandably, carabao meat is not readily available in many parts of the world, but no worries, you can use regular beef meat.

So is this recipe for breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack?  I’d say all of the above!


200 g miki or canton noodles (or your choice of egg noodles)

1/2 lb ground beef

1/2 lb fatty pork belly, sliced into tiny pieces

1 cup pork rinds (crushed)

1 cup shredded purple cabbage

1 cup bean sprouts

4 cups water

2 cubes, chicken bouillon

1/4 cup soy sauce

1 tbsp fish sauce

1 small red onion, sliced

4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

one fried egg for each serving

2 tbsps Olive oil

Juice from one small lime or lemon



Heat one tbsp Olive oil in  wok over medium-high heat.  Add ground beef and stir fry until golden brown.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Remove from heat and set aside. In the same wok, stir fry pork pieces until golden brown on all sides. Add half of the garlic and onions and saute for about a minute. Add noodles, 1 cup of water, one chicken bouillon and soy sauce, stirring constantly. Cook for one minute.  Add the rest of the water, chicken bouillon and continue cooking for 5 minutes. Season with the fish sauce and add bean sprouts.  Remove noodles from wok and set aside. (Tip: set aside remaining liquid. It makes for a great soup!) Add the remaining Olive oil to the wok and saute the rest of the garlic, onion and cabbage. Stir fry over medium heat for 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Turn off heat.  To serve, place desired amount of cooked noodles on a serving plate. Top with cabbage. Top cabbage with cooked beef. Sprinkle pork rinds over beef.  Finally, place fried egg on top of the beef and sprinkle with lime or lemon juice.




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