Julius D. Mariveles
An amateur cook who has a mean version of humba, the author has recently tried to make mole negra, the Mexican sauce he learned by watching shows of master chef Rick Bayless. A journalist since 19, he has worked in the newsrooms of radio, local papers, and Manila-based news organizations. A stroke survivor, he now serves as executive editor of DNX.

DNX Lifestyle is rolling out its homecooking series with recipes cooked and tested in the DNX Kitchen.

DNX has named it “Kusina Confidential” to pay homage to renowned chef and journalist Anthony Bourdain, whose rise to fame outside the culinary world started with his book, Kitchen Confidential.


A pork belly slab cooked humba style is being finished stovetop.
A pork belly slab cooked humba style is being finished stovetop.

Humba is basically adobo veering to the sweet side.

It is braised in soy sauce with garlic, ginger and star anise.

Humba sliced, plated.
Humba sliced, plated.


  • One kilo pork belly or kawali cut (preferably slab)
  • One cup soy sauce (preferably Lee Kum Kee, adjust according health condition or taste)
  • One cup muscovado sugar (preferably Alter Trade’s organic muscovado sugar, adjust according to blood sugar levels)
  • One cup vinegar (preferably native coconut sap vinegar)
  • One knob or head of garlic (cut crosswise)
  • Two big red onions (chopped)
  • One large piece of ginger (roughly chopped)
  • Two cups dried shiitake mushrooms (rehydrated for at least 30 minutes in cold water)
  • One cup star anise
  • 10 pieces dried or fresh bay leaves
  • One handful peppercorns
  • Fresh chilis (adjust based on heat preference)
  • Half a cup of chopped white onions (for garnish)


  1. Wash pork belly. Rub skin with rock salt. Rinse off salt.
  2. Combine all ingredients including, hydrating liquid of mushrooms, in a deep pot with the slab skin side up.
  3. Add water up to an inch or two above the pork slab.
  4. Bring to a boil.
  5. Lower heat and simmer for two hours or more until skin and meat are tender.
  6. Garnish with chopped white onions.

Eat with rice or alone but don’t forget your Catapres.


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