Budget Meal Day 2

Budget Meal Day 2

The F Word: Food By Chef Chris Lachenal

It’s the last day of February and our Day2 for the ₱200.00 meal-for-four challenge. Last time we made a Tuna Ball and Vegetable Misua soup dish. Today it is Chinese-style pork chops and Sautéd Chayote and Carrots with Shrimp Aligue (Ginisang Sayote).

I think I said this before that, as much as possible, I refrain from using artificial flavorings such as broth cubes, powder seasonings, MSG, etc. Yes, there are claims of MSG being natural and safe but it is enough that the produce and meats are already exposed or even enhanced with GMOs.

With the Misua dish, I used 1/4 of a shrimp broth cube for today’s vegetable dish I am using the aligue of the shrimps from the heads.

In our business, we use a lot of shrimp for our Palabok Espesyal, Pancit Canton, and Hot Shrimp Salad so we have a lot of shrimp heads. We use them in making our Palabok sauce.

To get the aligue, I partially freeze the heads to be able to peel off the top shell and under part. This makes it easy to handle without making a mess in your kitchen.

For the seasonings and condiments like soy sauce, oyster sauce, garlic powder, paprika, etc., there are sachets available which you can buy if you’re on a tight budget, but buying in big portions (e.g. 1L etc.) saves you more and the environment, as well, with less plastic waste 😉.


The pork is at ₱86.40 for 360 grams and ₱33.00 for a kilo of Sayote for a total of ₱119.60. You still have ₱30.60 for other ingredients.  Remember our budget is at ₱150.00 because ₱50.00 is allocated for a kilo of good quality rice.

So here is our Menu for Budget Meal Day2. 

Budget Meal Day 2

Chinese style Pork chops


350      g          Sliced pork (1.5 cm thick) can be pork shoulder, pork butt, pork     

                         steak, or pork chops bone-in

1/2       tbsp     Soy sauce

1/2       tbsp     Oyster sauce

1/2       tsp       Ginger powder/juice from grated ginger

1/2       tsp       Garlic powder

                          Pinch of ground pepper

1          tsp        Cooking wine

3/4      c           Corn starch

                         Oil for frying


Budget Meal Day 2


  1. Cut pork into desired portions (preferably into 8 pieces)
  2. In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, oster sauce, ginger, garlic, pepper, wine, corn starch and pork. Mix well until well incorporated.
  3. Fry until golden.
  4. Serve with vinegar or sweet chili sauce.


Sautéd Chayote and Carrots with Shrimp Aligue

(Ginisang Sayote)


2      tbsp     Oil

1      tbsp     Garlic minced

2      tbsp     Onion sliced

1      tbsp     Shrimp aligue

1      kg        Sayote, peeled and sliced thinly

⅓                of a Carrot sliced thinly

                   Salt & Pepper to taste


Budget Meal Day 2


  1. In a pan, heat oil. Saute Garlic and Onions until garlic turns lightly golden.
  2. Add in the Shrimp aligue and season with salt and pepper. This will enhance the flavor
  3. Place the sliced vegetables and about 1/4c. Of water.
  4. Mix well and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer until Chayote is cooked.

By utilizing the shrimp head we were able to get that rich shrimp flavor without using artificial flavorings and saving money as well.

If you happen to buy fatty pork, you save some of the fat for another dish. Cooking Menudo or Mechado in rendered pork fat gives it more flavor.

Two more budget meal recipes this coming March and other features.

Happy cooking and happy eating everyone!

Keep safe always,

Chef signed

Photos by Chef Chris Lachenal

Chef Chris Lachenal strives to elevate Filipino cuisine and revive dishes that are slowly losing popularity. A former chef instructor, he emphasized the importance of understanding the process of things in order to grasp refinement in food. As a chef-for-hire he satisfies his clients, always. He is the creative and passionate soul behind FoodCreations by CCL.

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