Vegetable Medley with Shrimp Paste (Pinakbet)


This Filipino dish is a favorite in the northern province of Ilocos in the Philippines where it is flavored with shrimp paste (bagoong) and pork.  I remember my grandmother making this with dried fish (tinapa).  Depending on the kind of vegetables you use, this can be bitter, or salty or both.  I used okra, squash, string beans and bittermelon and a bit of canned tuna.  My husband still refuses to eat it so I had this for lunch and he had his knackebrod (Swedish hard tack flat bread or as I lovingly call it the “cardboard” bread) and Swedish caviar. While I enjoy my bitter/salty dish with steamed rice. Yum!


  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium onion, sliced thinly
  • 3 medium roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 inch fresh ginger, sliced thinly
  • 1/4 cup canned tuna, drained
  • 1 tbs shrimp paste ( bagoong), available at Asian stores
  • 1 cup okra cut in bite size pieces
  • a quarter of squash or pumpkin, peeled and diced in one inch pieces
  • 1 cup cut string beans or long beans, 2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 of medium bittermelon, sliced and center removed
  • 2 tbs oil
  • 1 cup water


  1. Heat oil in saucepan and saute garlic and onions for 2 minutes. Add ginger, tomatoes and tuna and cook for 10 minutes. Add the shrimp paste and stir for 3 minutes.
  2. Add the water and bring to a boil. Add squash, bittermelon and okra and cook for 5 minutes.  Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper if desired.
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» Manang said: { Mar 21, 2009 - 08:03 }

Now I feel like having another vegetarian diet! Haha!
Miss ko na to; I wanted so much to cook this last week but I didn’t have bittermelon at the moment…now I crave it more!

» Manang said: { Mar 21, 2009 - 08:03 }

abangan ko chocolate and pistachio sans rival mo…

» Tangled Noodle said: { Mar 22, 2009 - 09:03 }

Pinakbet is the next dish that I want to ‘learn’ to make. It wasn’t may favorite growing up but now, I look at the ingredients with new eyes and tastebuds!

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