No frills okuy (vegetable fritters)

I’m laughing while writing this entry because I was reminded of the conversation last night with our friend J.

Me: Mag-post ku about okwi (I’ll post about the fritters)
J: Nanu namang okwi? (What the heck are ‘okwi’?)
You: Okwi, J. okwi.
J: (slightly annoyed) Nanu la pin deng okwi? (Again, what the heck are okwi!?’)
Me: Okuy!
J: Hmph! Salita na namang Guagua yan (That’s a Guagua word again)


Anyway, I’ve been craving okwi (or okuy) since you posted those pics. My dad also bought some last weekend but I didn’t like them very much. First of all, the okwi were the size of a big man’s fist and yet the shrimp was almost the size of a fingernail. Second, the center wasn’t quite cooked. Third, well, they made the sweet potato into cubes, which is just weird to me. So, I decided to make my own version, loosely following the recipe provided by Jennifer m. Aranas in her cookbook “The Filipino-American Kitchen.”

The recipe calls for cassava and sweet potato, no green papaya. which is just as well because green papaya is a bit difficult to find around here, and the Filipino store where I get some of my ingredients is closed for three weeks. Came out well, I thought. The secret was chilling the prepared okwi for about 20 minutes before frying them so the batter kinda pulls everything together.


  • 1 1/2 cup of sweet potato, grated or shredded
  • 1 1/2 cup of cassava, grated or shredded
  • 2 eggs, but we’ll only use the whites
  • 1/2 cup of cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups of cooking oil


Mix sweet potato, cassava, salt, pepper and cornstarch in a large bowl. Add the egg whites a little at a time and toss until the mixture sticks together. Form into thin patties and place on a tray. Chill for about 20 minutes in the refrigerator. Heat up the oil for frying. Scoop up a patty and lay it gently in the pan. Fry for about 5-8 minutes, flipping halfway through. When cooked, place the fritter on paper towels to drain excess oil. Serve with a vinegar dip.

This post was updated Feb. 18, 2017 to include the recipe.


5 Comments Add yours

  1. Betis Boy says:

    ha.ha. so even atching C hasn't heard of the term “okwi”. J must be right, that it's a guagua thing. he.he. will ask other capampangans I know (not from around here) if they also know it by that name.

    the photo reminds me a lot of the kaki-age (vegetable fritters) that are served in my favorite japanese restaurant in the mall that has since closed (the resto, not the mall) due to a fire. yes, unlike the round okwi, with this size the insides get pretty crunchy too. i could almost ask for some tempura sauce to go with this.

    i wonder if we got the okwi recipes from the japanese. i can't seem to remember any fried veggie spanish or chinese dish.


  2. Guagua Girl says:

    i'm getting the feeling it's just us folks in guagua who use “okwi.” i'm not very surprised, though. we've proven it time and again — capampangan is such a rich language.

    you're right about the kakiage — i think that's where we got it from (i still wasn't able to make the fritters as crispy as when they make them at sushi places).


  3. Anonymous says:

    we also call them “okwi” here in lubao 🙂 -MM


  4. Betis Boy says:

    Hi MM (are you M from college?)! so at least we know now guagua and lubao people call them okwi 😛


  5. Guagua Girl says:

    yeah, i was beginning to wonder if okwi was purely a guagua term … M? are you a former HS classmate? (guessing game!)


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