Humba with pineapple, tausi and dried banana flowers is a delicious mix of sweet and savory flavors that you will love with steamed rice. This visayana version of marinade is easy to make and will surely be a family favorite.
When I told my mother in 2016 that I quit my job in the blog full time, the first thing she said after a long silence was: “Paano pag nawalan ka na nang iluluto”. What happens if you run out of things to cook? She seemed very worried about my decision, but I couldn’t help bursting out laughing. His question was fun, endearing and absurd at the same time.
Filipino cuisine is so rich and full of history and several regional flavors; I don’t think running out of food to blog is a problem. Case in point this humba. The preparation and cooking procedure is similar to our recipe for pineapple pork marinade, but add some additional ingredients such as tausi and banana flowers, and you have a new dish to explore!
What is Humba
Humba (homba), which literally translates as tender pork (buzz) (ba), is a dish of Visayan stewed pork similar to the classic marinade.
In this sweeter and fatter regional version, the pork belly is simmered in a mixture of soy sauce, vinegar or pineapple juice and aromatic such as garlic, onion, peppercorns and bay leaf. When the meat is tenderly crumbled, palm sugar, pineapple, fermented black beans and dried banana flowers are added for an additional depth of flavor and texture.
Humba Bisaya, like most Filipino stews, is usually served as a main course, with steamed rice as the perfect canvas for your meat and sweet and salty sauce.
Tips on how to make the Humba pork recipe
- While you can combine everything in one step, take the extra effort to brown the pork belly. High heat abrasion caramelizes the surface of the meat. It enriches the dish with more complex flavors.
- The liquid in the can of pineapples is what you will use to stew the meat, so make sure the fruit is packed in juice and not in thick syrup.
- Be sure to rinse the tausi and drain them well, since they are usually packed in salted brine.
- Do not marinate the meat for more than 8 hours, since the acidity of the vinegar and pineapple juice will break down the meat’s protein fibers, altering the texture.
- Simmer and simmer to allow fat to yield and hard connective tissues to soften and melt in the mouth.
- Although vinegar is the traditional liquid to stew the humba, I like to add pineapple juice to give it a sweet and fruity touch.
- Use brown and non-white sugar to sweeten the dish. It has a little less