Paksiw Na Bangus
(Milkfish Stewed in Vinegar)

Paksiw Na Bangus
(Milkfish Stewed in Vinegar)

Being a group of islands and surrounded by bodies of water, the Philippines has an abundant supply of different varieties of fish the whole year round. Paksiw is a method of cooking by simmering meat or fish in vinegar and garlic. For meats, the popular Paksiw dishes are Lechon Paksiw (roasted pork meat cooked in spices and lechon sauce), and Paksiw na Baboy (pork hock or shank cooked similar to adobo).

For the fish version, the most popular fish variety is the bangus (milkfish), our national fish. This dish is very popular because it is so flavorful especially when cooked with chilies. Aside from frying, it is also the quickest and easiest way of cooking bangus. The other types of fish that can also be cooked as Paksiw are tilapia, tuna and galunggong (round scad). Adding vegetables like eggplant and ampalaya (bitter melon) is optional.

Paksiw na Bangus or Milkfish Stewed in Vinegar is one of the common everyday viands in Filipino households. In homes with no refrigerators, this dish could set for days without spoiling. Just be careful with the tiny bones of the bangus because there are a lot of them.

To ensure that the bangus is fresh, make sure that the scales are shiny, the eyes are translucent or white and not red, the gills are dark red, and the flesh is firm when you press it.

Preparation Time: 15 mins
Cooking Time: 20 mins
Yield: 3 servings

Ingredients:
1 large bangus, scaled and cleaned
1 cup water
1 thumb ginger, peeled and cut thinly
1 cup vinegar
1 medium sized onion, quartered
1/2 head garlic, crushed
3 chili peppers
1 small ampalaya (bitter gourd), chopped (optional)
1 medium sized eggplant, quartered (optional)
salt
1 tsp whole peppercorn

Cooking Directions:
1. Clean the bangus by removing the scales, innards and gills. Cut the tail and fins. Wash it thoroughly, and slice it diagonally.
2. In a pot, combine the water, vinegar, garlic, onion, ginger, peppercorns and salt. Bring to a boil.
3. Add the bangus and lay them side by side in the pot. Let it simmer for 3 minutes or until the bangus is halfway done.
4. Add the vegetables and chili peppers. Let it simmer for another 4 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.
5. Serve hot with rice and patis (fish sauce) to add more flavor.
6. Enjoy!

Paksiw Na Bangus (Milkfish Stewed in Vinegar)

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