HUMBA is a Visayan staple dish of stewed pork, cooked in soy sauce, vinegar and sugar. In taste and in look, it is very similar to adobo, so much so that you can rightfully refer to it as the Visayan take on adobo. It derives its name from the Chinese dish called hongma or hongba, which is a pork knuckle stew slow-cooked in soy sauce, garlic and other essential condiments.
In a recent cooking class at The Maya Kitchen featuring the heritage dishes of XO46 Heritage Bistro (which is a brainchild of power couple Andrew and Sandee Masigan and whose concept is to serve dishes that represent specific periods or eras in the country’s history, Sandee and Chef Tanya Dizon whipped up six interesting dishes, and one of them was the Visayan Humba.
XO46, whose XO in its name means ‘extraordinary,’ picked up the number 46 after the year 1946, which was the year when the United States relinquished its sovereignty over the Philippines and recognized its independence. As its name suggests, the restaurant serves a wide selection of local dishes from all over the country with a unique twist.
The recipe of Humba is as follows…
1/2 kg. pork liempo, sliced into big square chunks
1/4 cup water
100 ml. soy sauce
1/4 cup dark soy sauce
1/4 cup cane vinegar
1/4 cup pineapple juice
50 grams garlic
50 grams onion
1/4 cup muscovado sugar
100 grams banana blossoms
salt and pepper to taste
5 pcs. fried smashed banana
1. Combine water, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, vinegar, pineapple juice, garlic, onion and muscovado sugar in a stockpot.
2. Add pork liempo cubes.
3. Cook for 1 hour or until the liempo is tender.
4. Add banana blossoms, then allow sauce of humba to thicken.
5. Plate and serve with blanched pechay and smashed fried banana.