Folks who have not been properly introduced to this lovely Ilocano dish, initially give a snicker at the sound of its name. Soon after, they forget the humor and remember how enjoyable it was. I’m happy eating this alone, but definitely happier with another Ilocano food favorite, the heart-stopping (literally)bagnet (Deep fried chunk of pork crackling).
Back in Laoag, we got a lovely insight about Ilocanos when it comes to buying property: they’d rather have big backyard to go with their house so they can plant their vegetables. Backyard veggies like okra, ampalaya (bitter gourd) and talong (eggplant) are those staples you would find in a more popular Ilocano dish—the pinakbet (vegetables stewed is fermented fish paste).
Poqui-poqui is simple, unpretentious yet good. This is now my alternative to our tagalalog favorite—the tortang talong (eggplant frittata).
- 3 large eggplants or 4 medium size ones
- 2 T vegetable oil
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- 1 medium size onion or 2-3 shallots (sibuyas na tagalog), thinly sliced
- 1 large tomato, thinly sliced
- 1/2 c water
- 3-4 eggs
- Salt (or patis) and pepper to taste
Grill eggplants over hot coals or over the stove flames. Peel of the charred skin, slice into chunks and mash with a fork. Set aside.
Heat pan and add oil. Proceed to sauté garlic and onion at the same time. (We Pinoys usually sauté the garlic first. In this case, I don’t want the garlic to over-power the other ingredients.) When the onions are soft, add the sliced tomatoes and sauté for another 3-5 minutes.
Add the eggplants and water. Water makes the mashed eggplants less “paste-y”. Let it boil. In a bowl, beat the eggs and pour on the eggplant mixture. Add salt (or patis) and pepper to taste. Cook until the eggs are set but the dish overall is still slightly wet.
Serve as side dish to bagnet , lechon kawali , inihaw na liempo or fried fish.
© 2012, Kitchen Kitchie Koo. All rights reserved.