Patotim (Duck Braised in Coconut wine)
Chef Myke "Tatung" Sarthou. Photo by At Maculangan.
Chef Myke "Tatung" Sarthou runs a restaurant at his own home at a residential district of Quezon City in the Philippines which he calls Tatung's Garden Cafe which has been called "one of the fabulous indie films of the restaurant world."
He has traveled around Europe, the US, Southeast Asia and around the Philippines to learn about food, culture and and various cooking traditions. He learned to cook form his grandmother and mother who are both great cooks, but has honed his skill and technique through his own personal experience and exposure to other cuisines. But he has found his niche in Filipino cuisine where he recreates childhood memories through traditional and heirloom recipes to be savored by the younger Filipino generation.
Chef Tatung is also a regular recipe contributor to a number of Philippine publications, where he develops original and updated recipes for publication.
To him, cooking is not just about skill, it is about having a point of view. Chef Tatung's cooking is very personal as eating good food borders on the spiritual. "I try to honor the ingredients I work with because when you think about it lives were offered so that we may live." According to him, when one sits down for a meal, one enters a different dimension of the human experience. Then cooking ceases to be a mere function of everyday life, but an art form.
"It's different when you cook from your home kitchen and serve food at home because you always want to give your family, friends and guests the best, not from a commercial standpoint but because these people truly matter to you.
"I have great respect for the home cook's creativity and true love for the craft cooking on a daily basis using what is available and accessible to the home kitchen."
He believes that Filipino cuisine has much potential to be appreciated globally as the Filipino palate has become more sophisticated than ever before. He defines his cooking as soulful and global, and aims to use the best local ingredients with a new sensibility.
"I recreated the following recipe in memory of my grandfather "Pepe" who recently passed away. This was a dish i enjoyed having at parties at his home growing up in Cebu."
Photo by Sandra Celi.
Serves 3-4 persons, Prep time 15 min, Cooking time 1 hr and 30 mins
1 whole dressed duck approx 800 grams
1 tbsp pork lard or vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic minced
1 medium onion minced
¼ cup red bell peppers 1 inch cubes
2 tbsp ginger chopped
2tbsp black beans
2 laurel leaves
¼ cup native vinegar
2 cups tuba
¼ cup soy sauce
1 tsp cracked black pepper
1 finger chili (optional)
Banana leaves/sugar cane
Wash duck and pat dry. Season liver, gizzard, duck head and feet with ¼ tsp salt and stuff into duck cavity. Line clay pot with banana leaves or skinned and halved sugar cane and place duck into pot breast side down.
Sautee garlic, onions, ginger, bell peppers, black beans in lard and pour over duck, then add the rest of the ingredients.
Simmer over low fire for at least an hour and 15 mins until duck is tender and sauce reduced into desired thickness. Baste the duck with sauce every few mins.
© Chef Tatung Sarthou