Papaitan. Papaitan is a famous Ilocano soup dish mostly composed of cow or goat innards. It is usually made using goat’s tripe and innards or offal (kidneys, heart, liver) and then flavored with bile thus the name “papaitan” from the word “pait” which means bitter. The bitter taste of this soup comes from the bile. This is a bitter juice extracted by the liver and stored in the gallbladder to aid digestion. Although this soup is popular, one needs to develop and acquired taste to enjoy it. Once an acquired taste has developed, you will surely appreciate this dish without minding its components.
There are so many versions of Papaitan, but whether it is made of goat, pork, or ox, it always uses the animal’s tripe, innards and bile.
1/2 lb ox tripe
1/2 lb cow’s small intestine
1/2 lb beef, thinly sliced and chopped
1/2 lb cow’s heart
2 tablespoons bile
2 knobs ginger, julienned
1 medium sized onion, diced
6 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
8 cups water
4 to 6 pieces finger chilies
2 1/2 tablespoons salt
1/2 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 to 2 pieces lemon (or 5 to 8 pieces calamansi)
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1. Heat a cooking pot and pour-in 4 cups of water and put-in 1 tablespoon salt. Bring to a boil.
2. Put-in the ox tripe and small intestines and simmer until tender. This should take approximately 35 to 50 minutes.
3. Turn off heat. Remove the tender ox tripe and small intestines then slice. Set aside.
4. Heat a clean cooking pot and pour-in cooking oil.
5. When the oil is hot enough, sauté garlic, onion, and ginger.
6. Add the beef, heart, sliced intestines, and tripe then cook for about 3 to 4 minutes.
7. Add 1 1/2 tablespoon salt and ground black pepper then stir for a minute.
8. Pour-in remaining 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 40 minutes (you may add more water if needed).
9. Add bile then simmer for 5 minutes.
10. Add the finger chilies and squeeze-in the lemon juice then simmer for 3 minutes.
11. Turn off the heat and transfer to a serving bowl.