We have lived in Sampaloc, Manila since I started college at UST (University of Santo Tomas). That was also my last place of residence before moving to North America. And though quiet moments were few and far between, I somehow got used to the hustle and bustle of the busy city. Convenience was definitely on top of the list that made living there worth it. I didn’t have to wake up at dawn to go to school because it was just within walking distance from the place we were renting. And while my schoolmates were still stuck in traffic, I was already enjoying my lunch at home.
Food was very accessible. There was a wet market, supermarket, bakery and a lot of sari-sari stores (small neighborhood stores) nearby and a number of To-go food available. Just a block away was a Paresan (Beef Pares diner) which was always packed especially during lunch and dinner hours. I had tried their yummy pares a few times but never ate it there. We would just buy and brought it home. Some paresan serve better food than others but Sampaloc is home to a lot of good tasting ones!
Though that’s the case, people have different opinions on what a good pares is to them. Even when there’s a lot of paresan, they have their own loyal customers that frequent these places. Because it’s a complete meal at a very reasonable price point, city dwellers would flock at these carinderias (food stalls) to satisfy their hunger with this deliciously tender braised beef paired with garlic fried rice and a steaming bowl of clear beef broth.
Click here for garlic fried rice recipe
Beef Pares (Beef Brisket Stew – Instant Pot or Stovetop)
To make the broth (and tenderize beef):
- 3 ½ lbs beef brisket cut into 1 ½ – 2 inch cubes (pre boiled and rinsed) see Step 1
- 5 thin slices of ginger
- 1 small onion cut in half
- 2 star anise
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 6-8 cups water * see notes
To make the Beef Pares:
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 small onion finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ginger finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 6 tablespoons brown sugar
- 5 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 star anise
- 2 ½ cup beef broth from tenderizing the beef*
- 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 ½ tablespoons water
- salt and ground black pepper seasoning
- Thinly sliced green onions as garnish optional
- Garlic Fried Rice recipe link above
- Pre boil the beef: Add 8-10 cups of water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Put the beef pieces in and let boil (on medium heat) for 5 minutes. Drain and rinse the meat in cold running water until there’s no more scum. Don’t omit this step to have a better broth.
- Stovetop Method: Add all the ingredients (starting with the pre boiled beef) listed in the “To make the broth (and tenderize beef)”. Add 8 cups of water, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove the floating scum then lower the heat and cook until the meat is tender. Then proceed to Step 4.
- Instant Pot Method: Place all the ingredients (starting with the pre boiled beef) listed in the “To make the broth (and tenderize beef)” in the inner pot. Pour enough water until it reaches the No.8 line. Lock the lid (vent valve close) and set to Meat mode for 30 minutes. Allow the pressure to release for at least 15 minutes then carefully open the steam vent . Next, proceed to Step 4.
- Set all the tender meat aside (in a bowl) and drain the beef broth in a smaller pot. Taste the broth and add salt and ground black pepper, if needed. This will be served with the Pares.
- In a large pot, saute onion and ginger in oil then add the garlic. Put in the tender beef pieces and saute for a couple of minutes. Add in the brown sugar, soy sauce, star anise and 2 ½ cups prepared beef broth. Bring to a boil then combine cornstarch and water (in a small bowl) to make the slurry. Pour over the stew, stir and simmer for 2 more minutes. Adjust seasoning, if needed. Sprinkle with sliced green onions (if using) before serving.
- Serve Beef Pares with garlic fried rice and a bowl of beef broth. Enjoy!