LP11 – Ginisang Sayote (Pork & Chayote Squash Saute’)

Pork & Sayote Sautee
I suppose this could be considered a classic Filipino way of cooking; sauteed with the Pinoy version of the mirepoix, the holy trilogy in Filipino cuisine, garlic, onion and tomatoes. This method of cooking is ideal for me because it is also fast cooking and I get the meat and vegetables all in one dish. Sayote or chayote squash was such a common vegetable in Baguio where I grew up that we took it for granted. Often times, we can just go to the backyard and find it growing wild on the back fence. Now, whenever I get a taste for it, I’ve had to cough up as much as $1.50 each. Outrageous, but well worth it for my sould food.

This is such a simple dish, but I thought it may also be a fitting entry to Lasang Pinoy 11. Sayote always reminds me of the carefree days of my childhood in Baguio. Back then, we were allowed to roam the city on our own and our parents had nothing to worry about. No worries of abductions or molestations, just a simple life where almost everyone you met knew who you were, or at least in our case, who you belonged to. My parents had an apartment almost in the center of town, on Abanao Street just below City Hall. From our house we can walk Burnham Park, Rizal Park, or to the wet market on Kiangan Road. We had friends scattered all over the city too, and we were always allowed to go visit them on our own, which really was never ‘on our own’ as the whole city it seemed had it’s eyes on us at all times. A great joke between my sisters and I was how, when we get mad and try to run away, we never could because someone would always inevitably see us and send us home or tell the house help where to find us so that we are always back home by the time our parents came home. One of our favorite destinations to ‘run away’ to is our grandfather’s place in Camdas. They always had great merienda waiting 😉 But also, before they call the taxi to send us back home, they pack a bagfull of sayote picked from the backyard where they grow wild along the rock wall.

Funny how food elicits such memories from us, even something as lowly as the sayote squash. Here is my very simple and quick version of this classic dish, which also goes perfectly well with the humid summers we now have here in the South. It’s a sure ways to get out of the kitchen fast.

1 lb. Pork loin, cut into small strips
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small onion, sliced thin
3 roma tomatoes, chopped
1 teaspoon of ginger or about 1/2 inch of the root, sliced into strips
3 chayote squash
Patis (fish sauce), to taste
Ground pepper

Heat pan to medium heat and saute’ the pork strips in a tablespoon of oil until edges start to brown. Add garlic and saute until it becomes fragrant, 1-2 minutes then add the onions and tomatoes. Cook for a few more minutes until the onions are translucent and the tomatoes have softened. Add the chayote squash, stirfry for a minute or two then add about 1/2 cup of water. Season with patis or salt and pepper, cover and simmer until the squash is tender. Adjust seasonings and serve over steamed rice.

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13 comments on “LP11 – Ginisang Sayote (Pork & Chayote Squash Saute’)
  1. abe says:

    Trying this one out! 😀 14 years old here. LOL. I’m gonna be cooking this real good! Haha.Thanks for the poster.

  2. veronica says:

    I have to thank you for the recipes. My mom and dad use to cook for me growing up here in the states so I really didn’t pay attention in the ingredients and how to cook them. Now that I am older I miss the cooking. You give very detailed instructions in preperations and the ingredients are simple to find around me. So thank you and please keep adding recipes they are fantastic.

  3. Anonymous says:

    sad ako bihira kc ang sayote d2 sa bansang tinitirhan ko..wuhuhuhu… inga kyo lagi ^ _ ^
    just reading ur blog on dis food gives me warm fuzzy feel of pnas..
    miss kona!

  4. Anonymous says:

    sayote makes good ingredient for sariwang lumpia! Julienne strips.

    I also use it in making moo shoo vegetables.

    and, of course, it works well, too with tinola, as someone mentioned.

    lately, i include them in my miswa with ground beef (or turkey). Cut lengthwise. You can throw in some fish balls or squid balls and your soup is complete!

  5. JMom says:

    exactly, Chas! I use chayote for making tinola all the time 🙂

  6. charles ravndal says:

    Oh this is nice but too bad I didnt manage to spot any chayotes here. It’s also very nice with chicken in a soup

  7. JMom says:

    Hi Obachan! I am so glad you tried the bibinka recipe! Your photo looks so much more beautiful than mine 🙂

    Hi anonymous! gosh, that is too bad that the sayote in Baguio is becoming extinct. I know what you mean with having to eat sayote everyday lol! you have to admit our cooks were very inventive with their recipes 🙂

    Hi iska! classic, di ba? You can do this method of cooking with just about any vegetable. Actually, I have even tried it with zucchini (courgette) and it worked fine! 🙂 Love it best with upo though.

  8. JMom says:

    Hi ces! yes, I can’t believe how common it has become. I used to see it in the markets here rarely, and when I do sometimes they are old and wilted looking because no one knew what they were and did not buy them. Now, they are everywhere, and the price has come down a little, but it still exorbitant considering we used to get these for free 😛

    Manang, I bet all these things are slowly creeping up your way. Another solution is to try planting it. I have been wanting to try it here, since we have this hot, humid weather and long planting season. I just haven’t been able to sprout one though, I always end up cooking it! lol! My sitaw came back this year though. That’s another veggie that I decided to plant since the price is so high. $2.99/lb!

  9. iska says:

    sarap yan! it’s really Pinoy having garlic, onions and tomatoes. i just posted ginisang upo w/ shredded daing the other day 😀 not my entry though but i’m already working on it…

  10. Manang says:

    JMom, I have some sayote dishes in mind that I have been longing to cook, and one of them is this ginisang sayote. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen one here (sayang kasi it is one of the veggies that my sons truly love). Another is the ginisang gulay with sayote and baby corn and sugar snap peas (tama ba?) with quail eggs, pork and shrimp, with thick sauce. Eh di ko rin makita rito ang quail eggs (di naman bagay yung chicken eggs).

    Buti ka pa….(Pati si ces), me makukuhanan ng sayote.

    Once pa lang ako nakaluto actually, when we bought from PInoy store, one hour away, pero they get those from NY, so bihira din available.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Hi Jmom!I’m from Baguio myself.I used to take the sayote for granted too while growing up coz sometimes twas a full week of sayote with this or that, to the point na nakakasawa na! Anyways, sayote are now a rare commodity in Baguio coz of the virus that attacked them.

  12. obachan says:

    Looks nice. This must be really good with rice!

    BTW, I finally tried out your bibingka recipe last weekend and posted about it. Would you like to come over and take a look?

  13. ces says:

    yummm! kk-miss nga! good thing sayote is readily available here…

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