Beef shawarma is a popular street food that originated in the Middle East. It has since become a global favorite, with different countries putting their own twist on this delicious snack. In the Philippines, beef shawarma has been given a unique twist that’s definitely worth trying.
What Makes Pinoy Style Beef Shawarma Unique?
The classic beef shawarma consists of thinly sliced roast beef that is marinated in spices and cooked on a vertical rotisserie. It is then served with vegetables such as lettuce, tomatoes, and onions, and drizzled with yogurt sauce.
In the Pinoy style beef shawarma, the roast beef is replaced with beef tapa, a Filipino-style cured beef. The beef tapa is thinly sliced, cooked in a skillet until browned and crispy, and then mixed with fresh vegetables such as cucumber, tomatoes, onions, and lettuce. Instead of yogurt sauce, a combination of garlic and mayonnaise is used to add flavor to the shawarma.
Preparing the Beef Tapa
Beef tapa is a Filipino-style cured beef that is sweet and salty in flavor. It is a popular breakfast dish in the Philippines and is usually served with garlic rice and fried egg. In the Pinoy style beef shawarma, the beef tapa is used as a base ingredient instead of the usual roast beef.
Preparing the beef tapa is easy and requires only a few ingredients. To make the beef tapa, combine all the tapa ingredients in a bowl and marinate overnight or for 2 days in a refrigerator for the best result. The ingredients for the tapa marinade usually include soy sauce, calamansi juice, sugar, garlic, and black pepper.
After marinating, fry the tapa until cooked and browned. The combination of sweet and savory flavors in the beef tapa is the perfect base for the Pinoy style beef shawarma.
Making the Garlic Sauce
The garlic sauce is an essential ingredient in Pinoy style beef shawarma. Instead of using yogurt, a combination of garlic and mayonnaise is used to give the shawarma its distinct flavor.
To make the garlic sauce, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix until smooth. Set it aside while you prepare the other ingredients. The garlic sauce is a simple yet delicious addition to the Pinoy style beef shawarma.
Assembling the Shawarma
To assemble the shawarma, start by heating the pita bread in an empty hot skillet until both sides are light golden brown. Set the pita bread aside while you prepare the filling.
Lay the first pita bread in a plate and put 1 1/2 tablespoon of beef tapa, 1 tablespoon cucumber, 1 tablespoon tomatoes, 1 tablespoon onions, 1 tablespoon lettuce, 1 tablespoon grated cheese or sliced cheese, and 1 to 2 tablespoon garlic mayo sauce on the center.
Wrap the filling with the pita bread like a log or a burrito. Do the same on the rest of the pita bread. Add hot sauce if desired.
Why Should You Try Pinoy Style Beef Shawarma?
The Pinoy style beef shawarma is a unique and flavorful twist on the classic Middle Eastern dish. The combination of the sweet and savory flavors of the beef tapa, the freshness of the vegetables, and the creaminess of the garlic sauce make this shawarma a must-try.
Apart from being delicious, Pinoy style beef shawarma is also easy to make. The ingredients are simple and can be easily found in your local grocery store. You can also customize the shawarma to suit your taste preferences, adding or omitting certain ingredients as desired.
Here are some tips for making the perfect Pinoy style beef shawarma:
- Choose the right cut of beef: For this recipe, it’s important to choose a tender cut of beef that will cook quickly and evenly. Some good options include sirloin, flank steak, or skirt steak. Be sure to slice the beef thinly against the grain, which will help it cook up tender and juicy.
- Make sure the pita bread is fresh: The pita bread is a key component of any shawarma, and it’s important to use fresh bread that’s soft and pliable. Look for pita bread that’s still warm and slightly fluffy, and try to use it within a day or two of purchase.
- Don’t overcook the beef tapa: When cooking the beef tapa, it’s important to keep a close eye on it and avoid overcooking. The tapa should be browned and crispy on the outside, but still juicy and tender on the inside. If the tapa starts to dry out or become tough, it’s been cooked for too long.
- Customize the filling to your liking: One of the great things about shawarma is that you can customize the filling to your liking. Feel free to add or omit ingredients as desired, or substitute different vegetables or cheeses to suit your taste preferences. Some popular additions include pickles, olives, hot peppers, or hummus.
- Serve with a side of fries or salad: To round out your meal, consider serving your beef shawarma with a side of fries or a salad. French fries are a classic accompaniment to shawarma and can be cooked up quickly in the same skillet used for the beef tapa. Alternatively, you can whip up a simple side salad with fresh greens, sliced vegetables, and a tangy vinaigrette dressing.
Finally, Pinoy style beef shawarma is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that’s perfect for a quick and satisfying meal. With just a few simple ingredients and some basic cooking techniques, you can create a flavorful and filling shawarma that’s sure to impress your friends and family. So why not give it a try and see for yourself just how tasty and satisfying this dish can be!
NOTES ON THE INGREDIENTS:
Beef tapa is a popular Filipino breakfast dish that is made by marinating thinly sliced beef in a mixture of soy sauce, calamansi juice (a type of citrus fruit), sugar, garlic, and black pepper. The beef is then dried and fried until crispy. In Pinoy style beef shawarma, beef tapa is used as a substitute for the traditional roasted beef. The sweet and savory flavors of beef tapa work well with the fresh vegetables and garlic mayo sauce.
Garlic is a commonly used ingredient in many Filipino dishes, and it is no exception in Pinoy style beef shawarma. It adds a strong and pungent flavor to the dish, which pairs well with the other ingredients. Usually it is used in the garlic mayo sauce, which is a key element in this shawarma recipe.
Mayonnaise is a creamy condiment that is made by combining egg yolks, vinegar or lemon juice, and oil. In Pinoy style beef shawarma, mayonnaise is used to create the garlic mayo sauce. The addition of mayonnaise adds a rich and creamy texture to the sauce and complements the flavors of the beef tapa and vegetables.
The fresh vegetables used in Pinoy style beef shawarma include lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers. These vegetables add a refreshing crunch to the shawarma and balance out the salty and savory flavors of the beef tapa and garlic mayo sauce. In addition to adding flavor and texture, these vegetables are also a good source of vitamins and minerals.
Pita bread is a staple in Middle Eastern cuisine and is the traditional bread used in making shawarma. It is a flatbread that is round in shape and has a pocket in the middle, which is perfect for filling with the beef tapa and vegetables. In Pinoy style beef shawarma, the pita bread is toasted in a skillet before it is filled with the ingredients. The toasting gives the bread a slightly crispy texture and enhances its flavor.
How to Cook Beef Shawarma Filipino Style
- 12 pieces pita bread or tortillas
- beef tapa (see recipe below)
- 4 pcs tomatoes sliced thinly
- 1 small cucumber sliced thinly
- 1 small bunch lettuce sliced into strips
- 1 small white onion sliced thinly
- 3/4 cup grated cheese or 12 pcs sliced cheese
- garlic mayo sauce (see recipe below)
- cooking oil for frying the beef tapa
Beef tapa ingredients:
- 1/2 kilo sirloin beef sliced thin
- 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp. oyster sauce
- 1 Tbsp. liquid seasoning
- 3 pcs calamansi extract the juice
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise (or 80ml mayonnaise)
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 6 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 tsp black pepper ground
Garlic mayo sauce:
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil or coconut oil
How to make Beef Shawarma Filipino Style:
- To make the beef tapa, combine all the tapa ingredients in a bowl and marinate overnight or 2 days in a refrigerator for best result. Fry the tapa until cooked and browned.
- To make the garlic sauce, just combine all the ingredients in a bowl, mix until smooth and set aside.
- To assemble the shawarma: Heat the pita bread in an empty hot skillet until both sides are light golden brown. Set aside.
- Lay the first pita bread in a plate and put 1 1/2 tablespoon of beef tapa, 1 tablespoon cucumber, 1 tablespoon tomatoes, 1 tablespoon onions, 1 tablespoon lettuce, 1 tablespoon grated cheese or sliced cheese and 1 to 2 tablespoon garlic mayo sauce on the center.
- Wrap the filling with the pita bread like a log or a burrito. Do the same on the rest of the pita bread. Add hot sauce if desired.
Cooking Tips for Pinoy Style Beef Shawarma
- Marinate the beef tapa: To make the beef tapa, mix soy sauce, calamansi juice, sugar, garlic, and black pepper in a bowl. Add thinly sliced beef and mix well, making sure that the beef is fully coated in the marinade. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 2 days for the best flavor.
- Cook the beef tapa: After marinating, heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add the marinated beef tapa. Cook until the beef is browned and crispy, stirring occasionally. This should take about 10-15 minutes depending on the thickness of the beef slices.
- Make the garlic mayo sauce: To make the garlic mayo sauce, combine mayonnaise, minced garlic, lemon juice, salt, and black pepper in a bowl. Mix until well combined and smooth. Adjust the seasoning to taste, adding more salt or lemon juice if needed. Set aside until ready to use.
- Toast the pita bread: To assemble the shawarma, heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Place the pita bread in the skillet and cook until lightly golden brown on both sides. This should take about 1-2 minutes per side.
- Assemble the shawarma: To assemble the shawarma, lay the toasted pita bread on a plate. Spoon about 1 1/2 tablespoons of cooked beef tapa onto the center of the bread. Add 1 tablespoon each of sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, and lettuce. Sprinkle with grated or sliced cheese. Spoon 1-2 tablespoons of the garlic mayo sauce on top of the vegetables.
- Roll and serve: To wrap the shawarma, fold the sides of the pita bread towards the center, and then roll it up tightly like a burrito. Serve the beef shawarma immediately while it's still warm, with additional hot sauce if desired.