However you spell it – Beef Caldereta or Kaldereta, this Filipino Beef Stew is one of the ultimate comfort foods next to Adobo And it’s so easy to make and customize.
Roasting the Vegetables Gives a Deeper More Complex Flavor
I know there are tons of variations on this dish as there is with pretty much ANY Filipino recipe, so what I’ve decided to try and do is show you how you can make the basics of the dish and then I added some ideas that I’ve heard from multiple readers as to how THEIR Lola does it. Some add olives, some add liver paste, some add pineapple juice, etc., etc., etc. And really, those are the things that really make this a Filipino beef stew recipe, rather than just any beef stew recipe. I happened to add Thyme to it. I know that’s not a traditional Filipino ingredient, but I had some growing fresh and I knew it would work very well in this recipe. But no, it’s also not how my Lola would make it either. I’m sure if she read this she would give me the silent stare.
One of the secrets to developing flavors in this dish and taking your beef caldereta to the next level is to roast the vegetables beforehand. This allows the sugars to really come out and give you some slight caramelization before adding it to the stew.
You’ll also notice I used three different tomato products. I find the tomato paste, especially once you’ve browned it adds an added element of umami to the dish. The whole (chopped) tomatoes once roasted add sweetness, and the tomato sauce helps make it a stew.
And now that you’ve add all that Filipino yum, let’s talk about desert, shall we? Some Lemon Bars would be the perfect counter-balance to the savory overload in this dish!
Always present at any family gathering. Lola's Lemon Bars have always been a hit. These sweet, tart, refreshingly fresh desserts are a treat for everyone.