This Mushroom Tocino are my vegan take on the iconic Filipino Tocino, which is a cured meat (usually pork) dish distinct for its sweetness and bright red colour. I served this Vegan Mushroom Tocino with some sinangag (garlic fried rice), suka’t sili (vinegar with some chiles and onions), and kamatis (tomatoes) for the perfect hearty Filipino breakfast that can also be enjoyed any time of the day.
Vinegar with chopped red onions and chopped bird’s eye chili
Fresh tomatoessliced (I like to soak these in vinegar!)
Curly parsleyfor garnish
Mix together all the ingredients for the marinade in a large bowl until the sugar has dissolved. Feel free to adjust to your desired sweetness and acidity. Tocino is really very sweet but it’s of course a personal preference. I love the balance off the tocino by dipping it in some vinegar when eating.
You can break apart your large mushroom mushrooms into smaller once if you’d like but I kept them as is. Mix the mushrooms in the marinate to completely soak and coat in the sauce. Leave the mushrooms to sit for at least 15 minutes. You can also refrigerate these to marinate overnight.
Cooking the Tocino
Note: if cooking some sinangag (garlic fried rice), I suggest to cook this in the same pan before cooking the mushrooms.
Heat a large pan over medium high heat. Once hot, add in the oil. Place the mushrooms along with the marinating liquid into the pan. Leave the mushrooms to cook over medium to medium high heat until the liquid slowly evaporates. The sugars will slowly cook down and start to beautifully coat the mushrooms.
You can leave the mushrooms untouched for 3-4 minutes to lightly brown and char at the bottom before mixing to cook the remaining sides. You can add a pinch of salt to season the mushrooms, if you’d like.
Continue to cook the mushrooms down until all the sauce has been absorbed and the mushrooms have turned shiny and have a thin glaze-like coating from the sugars that have cooked down.
If making tofu scramble: Sauté the onions in the pan with some oil until tender. Add in tofu and crumble using a fork or with your spatula. Mix in the black salt and turmeric to coat the tofu. Season with some soy sauce or more salt, if needed. Sauté for 3-5 minutes until cooked and excess water has evaporated. Add in the chopped scallion or spring onions.
Serve your tocino with some sinangag (garlic fried rice), tofu scramble or a fried egg (if vegetarian), suka’t sili (vinegar with some chiles and onions), and kamatis (tomatoes) for the perfect hearty Filipino breakfast that can also be enjoyed any time of the day. Enjoy!
For this version, I use fresh white oyster mushrooms. I love the texture of oyster mushrooms—they’re like small fan-shaped mushrooms with beautiful ridges caps and a chewy, chunky stem. I would highly recommend using oyster mushrooms (white, brown, black, pink, or yellow varieties) if you have access to them. Maitake mushrooms also have a meaty texture, which can be great for this recipe.
SUGAR & PINEAPPLE JUICE
I used ready-to-drink pineapple juice that’s sweetened. If you’re using fresh pineapple juice that has a tart and more sour taste, you can opt to add more sugar, if needed.
For this version, I wanted to use an all-natural colouring so I used some annatto or atsuete powder to give it the nice orange-ish colour. It’s optional and you can opt not to colour your tocino with anything.