Lutu-lutuan #5 : Ginataang Paksiw na Isda (Fish in Coconut Milk Cooked in Vinegar)

It’s been 2 weeks since my last post but trust me, I did lutu-lutuan during those weekends – kawa style! Mama, Papa and my sister Ly – they all have their birthdays in August and we celebrated their birthdays at home with family and friends. I assisted my Papa and Tito in cooking but I could not afford to take down notes and do the blog at the same time – haggardo versoza ang peg. So, let’s just say that I was on an early vacation. (lol!)


I wanted to cook ginataang paksiw na tambakol (yellow fin tuna) to get away from all the pork and beef during this last two weeks. But when I woke up this morning, it was already 9:45! For a while, I was in my tulala mode because I know that it’s kinda late to go to the small market nearby to have a variety of options on what to cook.

I went to Mama and asked her if she thinks there’s still tambakol in the market. She’s not sureΒ  neither but… told me she already went to the market earlier because I was not up yet. She also wanted fish but couldn’t find any other fish but tilapia and bangus. Nice! πŸ˜€Β  Instead of tambakol, I used the tilapiaΒ . πŸ™‚ Other fish like tuna and galunggong can also be used.


The dish is actually easy to cook. The funny thing is it was hard to take a good picture of the cooked dish. Hindi photogenic yung isda! Wahaha! Pati yung siling haba, hindi nakisama. That’s why if you have noticed, you can’t find it in the picture. Na-eliminate siya from the picture. Ly took over taking the picture. πŸ˜›


For this ginataang isda dish, we will cook the fish in vinegar with the other ingredients (paksiw) first before cooking with the gata. Let’s start this lutu-lutuan!


  • 3/4 to 1 kg tilapia, cut into 2 or 3 parts if it is big
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 thumb-sized ginger, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp cracked pepper
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cup gata (coconut milk)
  • 3 pcs siling haba (finger chili)
  • 1-2 pcs siling labuyo, minced (optional, depends if you like it spicy or not)
  • Mustasa leaves (optional)
  • Salt and patis (fish sauce)to taste


  1. Ipaksiw ang isda. Put the sliced fish, garlic, onion, ginger and bay leaves in the pot. Pinch some salt and put some patis (about 1 tbsp) and the vinegar. Bring to a boil in medium heat then lower the heat and let it simmer for about 10 minutes or until the vinegar evaporated.
  2. Add the gata, siling haba, siling labuyo and mustasa . Simmer forΒ  another 10-15 minutes in very low heat until the gata thickens. I do this with open lid. I think that this avoids the gata from curdling.




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