Annie's Chamorro Kitchen: Tinaktak

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Annie's Chamorro Kitchen: Tinaktak

by: Lt. Col. Annette Merfalen | .
Annie's Chamorro Kitchen | .
published: July 23, 2015

Beef Tinaktak is a delicious Chamorro dish.  It’s one of my favorite comfort foods–I love drowning my rice with the coconut milk kådu (broth).

Tinaktak–I love saying that.  I think the name came from the sound made when pounding pieces of steak with a knife to tenderize it (tak tak tak tak tak).  Well, maybe that’s not really where the name of this dish originated from, but it sounds good, doesn’t it? :)

Rather than pounding a piece of steak, you can use minute steak or ground beef in this recipe.

Give my recipe a try. I think you’ll like it.

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds minute steak, cut into bite sized pieces (or substitute with 3 pounds lean ground beef)
  • 2 cans coconut milk
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cans stewed tomatoes, undrained (chop tomatoes into small pieces)
  • 2 cups fresh green beans, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 4 tablespoons Dashida seasoning (or salt, to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • donne’ (hot pepper), optional

Directions:

1.  If you’re using fresh green beans, you’re going to want to blanch them first.  Blanching means to put vegetables into a pot of boiling water, let it cook for a few minutes, then remove the vegetables and immediately place them into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.

Here’s how it’s done.

In a large pot, bring about 5 cups of water to a rapid boil over high heat. Add enough salt so the water tastes faintly salty. While the water heats, fill a medium sized bowl about three quarters full with ice, then add enough cold water to cover the top of the ice.

When the water is boiling and the ice bath is ready, trim the green beans to the size you need. It’s best to trim them just prior to cooking so they won’t oxidize or dehydrate. Add the beans to the boiling water in batches small enough to ensure that the water doesn’t lose its boil. Boil the beans only until they’re barely cooked through but still tender. To test, remove one piece with a slotted spoon, dip it into the ice bath to cool, and eat it.

As soon as the beans are done, remove them as fast as you can and submerge them in the ice bath. Remove them from the ice bath as soon as they are no longer warm.  Set aside.

2.  In a medium-sized pan, sauté the meat, onions and garlic over medium high heat; cook until meat is browned and onions are translucent.

3.  Add tomatoes to the meat mixture, juice and all.

4.  Add the blanched vegetables to the meat and tomatoes mixture.

5.  Add the Dashida and black pepper.  Stir, taste, and adjust the seasonings if needed.

6.  Slowly stir in the coconut milk; lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes or until the coconut milk is heated (do not boil).

7. Add donne’ if desired.  Serve over hot rice (steamed white or brown) and ENJOY!

Annie's Chamorro Kitchen website

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