I was truly reminded last week that true, ethnic Filipino food ties in many crafts and skills in its preparation. A cook must not only know what ingredients to add and in what proportions, she must also know methods of preparation that are practically art forms in themselves. The Tausug woman above is weaving a purse of young coconut palm fronds in which to cook rice. This dish, Ta’mu, is the traditional accompaniment to Satti, barbecued meat served with a savory, spicy sauce.
The Tausug Satti sauce is not peanut-based, unlike the Malay and Indonesian satay, but instead the sauce – perhaps thanks to Spanish influence? – is made with tomato sauce, bell peppers, and chilis. Must’nt forget the chilis!