How to Cook Bangus Belly Bistek

Bistek is a type of Mexican dish which is traditionally made from pieces of salted and peppered sirloin (a steak cut from the rear part of an animal). The meat is usually flattened with a meat tenderizing tool and is coated with bread crumbs before being deep fried. This recipe is usually served in fried or baked tortillas as Bistek taco.

Bangus, also called Milkfish, is a large silvery fish of the South Pacific and Indian Oceans, which is notorious for being much bonier than other fish. Bangus is the local name for deboned milkfish, and the belly of this fish makes an incredibly tasty bistek. To cook the deboned milkfish belly in a bistek style,the fish is first marinated and deep fried and then slowly cooked with onions in soy sauce and calamansi juice.

Prep time: 10 min
Cooking time: 25 min
Total time: 35 min
Yield: 4 servings

– Boneless milkfish belly: 1 kg
– Canola cooking oil: 1/8 cup
– Garlic (finely chopped): 5 cloves
– Large white onion (sliced into rings): 2 pcs
– Soy sauce: 1/2 cup
– Calamansi: 10 pcs
– Whole black pepper: 1 tsp
– Green chili for garnish: 2 pcs


  • 1

    Marinate the bangus

    Buy the belly part of deboned milkfish from your local seafood store and cut it into pieces of your desired size. Cut all the calamansi in half with a sharp knife and squeeze the juice out of them into a small bowl. Pour half of the calamansi juice into a large bowl. Also add half of the soy sauce and freshly ground black pepper to the calamansi juice and mix well. Now add the bangus pieces to the bowl and stir so that the fish is completely coated with the marinade. Cover the bowl and allow the bangus to sit in this marinade for at least a couple of hours (overnight is best).

  • 2

    Cook the bangus belly bistek

    In a medium sized heavy bottomed pan, shallow fry the marinated bangus pieces. Once the fish is done, remove it from the heat and place on a serving plate. In another pan pour 1/8 cup of canola cooking oil and sauté chopped garlic in it until fragrant. Remove the garlic from the pan and sauté onion slices in the same pan until golden brown. After removing the onion slices from the pan, pour all the marinade from the bowl into the pan. Add bangus and half of the fried onions to the marinade and simmer for 5 to 7 minutes. Garnish the recipe with green chillis and top with the remaining onions and toasted garlic. Your bangus belly bistek is now ready; serve it with garlic rice, or in any other way you prefer.

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