Celebrate The Holiday Season With These Festive Recipes
In partnership with Dona Elena

Celebrate The Holiday Season With These Festive Recipes

Sometimes, a warm home-cooked meal is the best gift you can give your loved ones this holiday season.

The end of the year marks the time for celebration with family and friends. Even if we can’t gather in larger groups or be physically close with our extended relatives, we’ll always be able to connect with our loved ones through food, be it with delicious home-cooked meals or special care packages filled with their favorite snacks and dishes.

Show your love this holiday season and surprise them with these wholesome meals that are guaranteed to warm their belly and soul. Featuring immunity-boosting Doña Elena Olive Oil that is packed with nutrients and antioxidants, these simple recipes offer a healthier alternative that is equally (if not more) tasty and fit for a festive dinner menu.

Related: Choose The Right Olive Oil For A More Flavorful Feast

Lechon Belly with Caesar Salad

Lechon Belly with Caesar Salad by Richard Gomez

A traditional dish that is synonymous to celebration in the Philippines, Lechon is quintessential to any holiday feast. While it is common to roast the whole pig, only the liempo (pork belly) is used in this recipe so that it’s easier to make at home. This Filipino delicacy is known for its crispy crackling skin and tender juicy meat, but the flavor is another thing to rave about.

This holiday recipe by Richard Gomez uses three variants of Doña Elena Olive Oil to create different elements of the dish as each type has unique qualities that make it suitable for different methods of cooking. The recommended usage for each olive oil can be easily identified on their brand new bottles which have vibrant designs and a unique shape that makes it easier to hold.

Sprinkled with a generous amount of salt and pepper, the pork belly is seasoned with an onion and chili mixture for a spicy kick. Stalks of spring onions and lemongrass are also added to lend their aromatic flavors to the meat. The pork belly is then rolled and tied with string, sealing all the flavors, before it is boiled in water that is infused with ginger, laurel leaves and black pepper. This helps to add more flavor as well as soften the skin and meat for a melt-in-your-mouth texture.

Related: Doña Elena Olive Oil: Brand New Look, Same Great Taste


Once boiled, lay it out on the roasting pan and poke the skin so that it will get crispier when it cooks in the oven. Before that though, it is important to coat it evenly with Doña Elena Pomace Olive Oil and more salt. Besides adding more flavor, Pomace is best used for roasting as it has the highest heat tolerance. For the first 15 minutes, turn the pork belly every 3 to 6 minutes so that all sides are evenly cooked. After that, lower the heat and leave it to roast to golden brown perfection.


Balance out the rich savory flavors of the Lechon with a refreshing Caesar Salad, complete with crunchy croutons. The secret to this delicious salad lies in the homemade salad dressing, which is made of egg yolks, anchovies, mustard, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, tabasco, grated parmesan, and Doña Elena Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Pure Olive Oil. While the rich taste of Extra Virgin Olive Oil is most suited for salads and dips, too much of it will make the sauce too bitter. It’s best to mix some Pure Olive Oil - recommended for everyday cooking - to balance out the taste. Don’t rush this process as the olive oil has to be added slowly so that it can emulsify properly. It might be tedious but your patience will be rewarded with a creamy vibrant salad dressing that pairs perfectly with your greens.


The croutons are easy enough to prepare. Simply dice some bread and generously drizzle Extra Virgin Olive Oil, salt, pepper and parsley for some herbaceous flavors before toasting them.

Watch this video for the full recipe.

One-Pan Level Up Salpicao

One-Pan Level Up Salpicao by Carla Abellana

This mouthwatering Beef Salpicao packs maximum flavor with minimum effort. Another classic Filipino dish, Salpicao is usually made of beef cooked in butter, Worcestershire sauce and lots and lots of garlic. It’s great to make for special occasions because it requires very few ingredients and just a few minutes of your time. Many variations of this dish exist but this version by Carla Abellana pays special attention to the beef. Instead of tenderloin or striploin (which are more commonly used), this festive recipe calls for some good quality ribeye - after all, when else can you indulge if not during the holidays?

Related: A Complete Noche Buena Menu For Every Budget


Chopped into cubes, the beef is marinated with salt, pepper, garlic, Worcestershire sauce (or soy sauce) and Doña Elena Pure Olive Oil. Recommended for everyday cooking, Pure Olive Oil is more flavorful and aromatic than normal cooking oil and has added health benefits to boot. It’s best to let the beef marinate for at least an hour so that it can absorb all the seasonings. Here’s a tip: prepare the beef the day before to save time and obtain maximum flavor!

Related: Christmas Dinner in Asia: Twists on Classics from Your Resident Asian-Canadian


Heat the pan on medium heat and pour some Doña Elena Pure Olive Oil to cook your marinated beef. Be careful not to overcook it till it gets tough and chewy. Aim for medium rare to medium doneness for the best result, and serve these juicy morsels of beef with some leftover sauce and toasted garlic chips for that extra bit of flavor and crunch.

Watch this video for the full recipe. 

This article was created in association with Doña Elena Olive Oil. For information, visit their Facebook and Instagram pages. You can also buy Doña Elena Olive Oil on Lazada and Acemarket.ph.

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