Nothing beats a comforting bowl of hot La Paz Batchoy, especially on a cold rainy day. It’s loaded with fresh egg noodles, flavorful broth, pork meat, chicharon, and raw egg for a hearty and tasty soup to warm you up!
Sadly, my first introduction to La Paz Batchoy was the yellow foam bowls labeled Lucky Me! Don’t get me wrong. I have nothing against convenient foods.
As much as I love to cook, noodle packages are a staple in my house, and I always keep a stock of them. In fact, one of my favorite quick-fix meals is a made from instant ramen noodles.
These noodle go-cups had served me well, especially back in the day when I used to pack lunch for work. But when a friend brought her made-from-scratch version of authentic batchoy for me to try, and I got to experience silky noodles and rich flavors you can only get from homemade, there was no turning back.
The better quality, of course, comes with a price as making the batchoy from scratch does take a bit of work. The beef and pork bones alone take hours of simmering to draw out the flavorful homemade stock. But oh my sweet, is the effort so worth it!
Can you imagine the fantastic flavor of the stock from all that marrow-rich bones above? Liquid gold, my friends, liquid gold. A word of wisdom from someone who sweated for four hours to satisfy a La Paz batchoy craving, get into the habit of making your homemade stock, and store in the freezer to have handy for your favorite soups!
What is La Paz Batchoy
La Paz Batchoy also referred to as batchoy or batsoy, is a famous noodle soup from La Paz, Iloilo City, made with pork offal, crushed chicharon, meat stock, and fresh egg noodles.
It’s said to have originated from the Chinese community who lived in the La Paz district. Batchoy came from the word “Ba-Chui,” which means pieces of meat in Chinese. In time, the Filipinos adopted and reinvented it to the delicious noodle soup we know today.
La Paz Batchoy vs Batchoy Tagalog
Although both versions share pork and organ meats as common ingredients, the flavor profiles of these two dishes are very distinct.
The Batchoy Tagalog of Northern Luzon is made with pork blood, miswa noodles, chili leaves, and a ginger-based broth. However, the La Paz Batchoy of Iloilo uses pork and beef stock flavored with shrimp paste, fresh miki noodles, and toppings of boiled meat, crushed chicharon, fried garlic, and raw eggs.
- The heart of this dish is the homemade broth. Add bones, beef meat, and tendons to make the soup tastier and more flavorful.
- Miki noodles are traditionally used, but other fresh egg noodles will work in a pinch.
How to serve
- La Paz batchoy is delicious as a filling midday snack or main meal.
- To serve, place the egg noodles in a bowl, top with piping hot broth, and then garnish with toasted garlic bits, crushed pork cracklings, spring onions, and a raw egg.
- In the batchoy specialty restaurants, it’s common to for customers to sip and savor the soup first and then ask for a refill of the kaldo to finish off the noodles.
- It’s also customary to enjoy the noodle soup with a side .
La Paz Batchoy
- 3 pounds pork bones
- 2 pounds beef bones, with marrow
- 1/2 pound pork shoulder
- 1/2 pound pork intestines, cleaned
- 1/2 pound pork liver
- 1 red onion, peeled and minced
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 tablespoon sauteed shrimp paste
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon MSG
- rock salt and pepper
- 2 package (16 ounces each) fresh miki noodles
For the Toppings
- pork cracklings (chicharon), crushed
- fried garlic bits
- green onions
- 8 whole raw eggs, optional
In a deep pot, bring enough water to cover bones to a boil. Add bones and boil, skimming scum that floats on top, for about 10 minutes. Drain bones and discard liquid.
Under cold running water, rinse bones to rid of any scum. Rinse pot. Return the bones to the pot and enough cold water (about 10 to 12 cups) to cover. Bring to a boil, skimming scum that floats on top. Lower heat, cover, and simmer for about 2 hours.
Using a colander, strain broth. Scrape off any attached meat from the bones and set aside. Using a small spoon, scoop out marrow from beef bones and set aside. Discard the bones.
Return broth to the pot and bring to a boil. Add pork shoulder and pork intestines. Cook for about 30 to 40 minutes or until tender. With a slotted spoon, remove from pot and allow to slightly cool to touch. Slice into strips and set aside.
Add liver to pot and cook for about 7 to 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove from pot and allow to slight cool to touch. Slice into strips and set aside.
Add onions and garlic to the pot of hot broth. Cook for about 2 to 3 minutes or until onions and garlic are softened.
Add shrimp paste and stir until dispersed. Add sugar and MSG. Season with rock salt and pepper to taste.
In a saucepot, bring about 3 quarts of water to a boil. Using a strainer basket, submerge noodles for about 30 to 40 seconds. Drain well and divide into serving bowls.
Ladle hot broth over the noodles. Top with sliced pork, intestines, liver, and any scrap meat from bones. Divide bone marrow into each bowl, if desired.
Garnish with chicharon, fried garlic bits, and green onions.
Crack a raw egg into each bowl, if desired. Serve hot.