Gising-Gising means “wake up, wake up”. Why? Because the heat of the bird’s eye chillies will slap you in the face! When making this dish, you really need to be generous with the chillies. Otherwise, this dish would just be a normal ginataang sitaw (long beans in coconut milk), right? With regards to spice level, it should be closer to a Bicol Express. Meaning, H O T !
According to our old friend Wikipedia, gising-gising originated from the provinces of Nueva Ecija and Pampanga. It is traditionally made with chopped winged beans (sigarilyas), which I have been trying to grow to no avail. So we will do what many other Filipinos have done, and use the more accessible long beans instead.
One very important ingredient of this dish is the bagoong alamang (shrimp paste) which will contribute the main salty flavour. You can get vegan bagoong from NUNÒ Vegan Filipino Kitchen, The Good Choices, and many other vegan suppliers in the Philippines. If you are not in the Philippines, you can try this Vegan Bagoong recipe or simply use black bean sauce or brown miso paste.
In this recipe, I cooked the beans for quite a while. Many people like to have their long beans fairly crunchy, but my husband and I both like the beans to be quite soft. So, adjust the cooking time to suit your preference. OmniMeat is great in this because it is so chewy and works nicely with the firm long beans.
I really really love this dish. The sweetness of the coconut milk with the heat of the bird’s eye chillies is absolutely addictive.