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one filipino dish a week » Blog Archive » Bistek (a success) - paoix

Bistek (a success)


That right there has got to be the most beautiful picture I’ve taken so far. It makes my mouth water every time. My photography skills aren’t really that great but I got it right this time. :)

Not only was the picture perfect but I think I might have gotten this dish down pretty good as well. The last time that I tried this out I had the idea of making it more American-ized style steak. It came out good but not exactly what I wanted. My childhood memories of bistek aren’t really that great. I think in the Philippines a pretty tough cut of meat is used… not exactly sure what it is. So I wanted to really try to find a good cut for this dish. Last time I used flank steak but that came out a little on the tough side so this time I used a skirt steak. Okay, I know that this is a pretty tough cut of meat as well. However, when I started to dig a little bit more about the skirt steak I learned that this is the diaphragm muscle of the cow AND what’s used it authentic fajitas. I’ve had some amazing juicy fajitas in Houston so I was excited about this one.

The portion size that I used here is only really good for 1.5 so adjust accordingly:

1lb skirt steak
2 T soy sauce
2 oz kalamansi juice (about a shot glass worth)
pepper and salt to taste
1 T oil (I used olive oil)
1/2 medium Spanish onion


Slice the skirt steak into about the size of a deck of cards. Then put it in between plastic wrap and flatten.


Marinate the steak in the soy sauce, kalamansi and pepper for a few hours. I marinated it in the morning put it in the fridge and it was good when I got back from work. I heated up the cast iron pan. Once it was nice and hot I poured the oil in and laid the steak down. This is pretty thin steak so it really only takes 2 minutes each side for it to cook (medium rare). If you cook it any longer and you’ll have shoe leather in your mouth. Take the meat out of the heat and plate. Cook the onions in the pan juices that was remaining until it caramelizes and pour the rest of the marinade in with it. Put it on top of the steak and pour the remaining juices.

The steak came out just right. It was nice and pink in the center. Don’t fear the pink! I know Filipinos tend to over cook meat. There’s no point in buying good quality meat if you just over cook them. The kalamansi penetrated to the meat very nicely and had the perfect acidity to it. This would have gone real well with some nice red wine.


I served this with rice cooked with pandan leaves. The pandan leaves gives off this amazing fragrance to the rice. A perfect combination to the steak.

p.s. Someone sent me a message through the contact form but I accidentally deleted it thinking it was spam. If you can resend your comment/question. I would be glad to answer.

7 Responses to “Bistek (a success)”

  1. can you please please make this again??? im hungry and I haven’t had bistek in a long time. :(

    Please :(

  2. That’s a yummy looking bistek!
    I’ve never used skirt steak for bistek before, I’ll try it next time. Bistek with plenty of onions is my hubby’s favorite Filipino dish.:)

  3. Nakakatakam naman!

  4. Lami kaayo!…. Pic made my mouth water!

  5. Hoy pao! You have to make this when you come visit cebu. actually mao na ni bagong pamaagi sa immigration.. you cant get in unless you bring bistek with you :P

  6. Beef steak has always been my all time favorite dish and i am always looking for some new recipes that has steak as the main ingredient.~;.

  7. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know so much about this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you can do with a few pics to drive the message home a bit, but other than that, this is magnificent blog. An excellent read. I will definitely be back.

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