Estofado originated in Catalonia, Spain, which is part of the western Mediterranean cuisine that dates back to the 8th century. Catalan cuisine is not the same as Spanish food but it is deeply related to the other regions of Spain especially Valencia. And so that's why Spaniards from Valencia and Barcelona who came to our islands also brought the estofado with them. Catalans have their own identity- - they have their own language, history, culture and system of cooking. Catalans mix meat and seafood in the same recipe. It's called 'mar i muntanya', which means 'sea and mountain' together.
Traditional Catalan cuisine is pork-intensive because Catalonia is one of the main producers of swine products in Spain. The original estofado is a mix of sweet and savory pork stew with sauce based on 'botifarra' (pork sausage). The tradition of adding fried saba bananas and potatoes to estofado was adopted from the Latin American countries such as Peru, when estofado was introduced to them also by the Spaniards.
Here is my recipe for simplified vegetarian estofado, Filipino style:
4 pcs tokwa or 1 block tofu (cubed, fried)
2 c potatoes (cubed, fried)
4-5 pcs saba bananas (sliced, fried)
2 Tbsp leeks or spring onions
1/2 c soy sauce
1/2 c vinegar
1/2 c water
2 Tbsp Adobo mix powder
slivered leeks or young onion rings for garnishing
1. In a pan, saute leeks or spring onions. Add soy sauce, vinegar, water, pepper, seasoning and adobo mix powder. Simmer for a while.
2. Add tokwa, potatoes and saba. Mix well and cook, Remove from heat. garnish with slivered leeks or young onion rings. Serve.
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