Pork belly braised with shrimp paste

In the Philippines, this dish is also called ‘binagoongan’. Translated loosely as something cooked in bagoong, a term used for fermented fish or in this case shrimp paste. While I have heard of this dish for years I have never made it myself nor have I ever tasted it, I don’t think. I was intrigued by its description though, and I have heard of how delicious it is from other people, I just had to try it out.

Plus, for some reason, I have had the weirdest craving for something fatty and salty lately so could anything be more perfect than this dish to sate my craving? The more I researched how to cook this dish, the more I realized how many different versions and variations there are. It’s almost like our beloved adobo. Everyone has their own version of it. So even though I didn’t at first plan on associating this dish with the traditional ‘binagoongan’ as I didn’t really follow any of the recipes I looked at but rather did one of my cafeteria methods again by picking and choosing elements that I liked from each recipe, I supposed I can honestly say this is my version of ‘binagoongan’.


1 lb. pork belly, cut into chunks or cubes
6 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped
1 large onion, sliced
1 inch knob of ginger, sliced
2 serrano chilis, chopped with seeds
2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. shrimp paste
1/2 cup water (or more as needed)

Place the pork belly chunks in a pot over medium heat and lightly brown the sides until some fat have been rendered. Add the garlic, onions, and ginger. Saute’ with the pork for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Add the chili peppers and vinegar, cover and cook for a couple of minutes until the vinegar has almost been absorbed and the dish starts to sizzle again. Add the soy, shrimp paste and a half cup of water. Mix, cover and simmer until the pork is tender and almost all of the liquids have been absorbed. Check every 20 minutes or so and if the liquid is almost gone but the pork is not as tender you’d like it to be, add another half a cup of water. Keep repeating this until the pork is fork tender and the liquid has been reduced. This shouldn’t be soupy.

Good luck, and good eating 🙂 Make sure you have lots of steamed rice on hand.

Filipino Cookbooks

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8 comments on “Pork belly braised with shrimp paste
  1. Pookah says:

    Looks good Jmom!
    Where did you find the pork belly?

  2. Midge says:

    Hi, JMom! Ooh! Binagoongang baboy is, oddly enough, enjoying a revival here in the Philippines and who cares about fat and calories. Your version looks really good.

  3. JMom says:

    hi chas, I hope you find shrimp paste too. I had a hard time finding one I like here, but now that I found the place, I’m a regular 🙂

  4. chase says:

    I am also having these cravings for salty and fatty food. It looks so delicious Jmom! Hopefully I can find some shrimp paste here

  5. JMom says:

    Thanks, panda. Let me know how you like it.

    Stel! this was another one from the ‘secret pot’ hehe! I was the only one who indulged. OMG, don’t remind me of the super sour green mangoes…nothing makes my mouth water faster 🙂

    Hey pookah! I get the pork belly and shrimp paste in two different places. The pork belly I get at the A&C chinese market in Raleigh (near Garner – S. Saunder exit towards 70). Sorry I don’t have the exact address and can’t find t online. It’s a big market close to the In & Out and Taco Bell, you can’t miss it. They have shrimp paste there too, but I usually buy the Filipino brand from the Oriental Store of Raleigh on 3601 Capital Blvd. Let me know when you try it.

  6. Pookah says:

    Hey Jmom!

    Wow! I have been seeing pork belly as a new ‘fad’ in some local restaurants. You recipe looks great! 2?s: where did you buy it as well as the shrimp paste. I will really try this!

  7. drstel says:

    haaaay mommyJ! i’m in trouble…have been craving this so long, and vainly trying to resist. copy paste ko na ha! only thing missing is some super sour green mangoes…

  8. The Panda says:

    This looks and sounds really delicious. Will try very soon 🙂

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