The crispiest chicharon bulaklak you'll ever taste!
Chicharon bulaklak is a very popular match with beer usually served during celebrations. However, it can also be served as an afternoon snack, and if you're feeling adventurous, you can also serve it as one of the many side dishes during lunch.
Servings 4 people
- 2 lbs ruffled fat (pig mesentery)
- 4 bay leaves
- 1 tbsp peppercorns
- 1 head garlic crushed
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 cups vegetable oil
- 6 cups water
- 2 cups palm vinegar (sukang paombong)
- 1 cup coconut vinegar (unrefined)
- 10 Thai chilis
- ½ red bell pepper
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp peppercorns
- 2 thumbs ginger
- Salt to taste
The same as with lechon kawali (also a deep-fried meat dish), you have to boil the ruffled fat first so it's tender before you can fry it.
Put the pork mesentery in a large pan. Pour in water to about 2 inches above the pork.
Add the bay leaf, peppercorns, garlic, and 1 to 2 tbsp of salt.
The boiling time for the ruffled fat to make your chicharon bulaklak should be around 45 minutes or until tender.
Remove the mesentery from the pan and let it drain.
Discard the boiling liquid and other residue.
You can do this in advance, so keep it refrigerated for several hours to chill or until you're ready to start frying. You can even freeze it to keep it for several months. Whatever you do, you need to at least give it time to dry out a bit before frying.
Deep-fry the meat
Cut the ruffled fat into smaller pieces and make sure to season them with salt all over. You can still keep them pretty big though, as they should be a handheld snack to chew on from out of your hand. It's a beer snack!
Add oil to the deep fryer and preheat to 400°F (that's about 200°C) or to the highest setting. You can use a deep cooking pot as well.
Now deep fry the ruffled fat pieces in batches.
Deep fry for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the vigorous oil splashing has stopped. Turn over the pieces.
Continue to deep fry until you get a nice golden-brown color. When done, remove from the deep fryer and make sure to get most of the oil out with some paper towels. I like to put mine in a bowl lined with paper towels as soon as each batch is done and cover them all with some more paper towels once I've fried all of the meat.
Mix the spicy vinegar
Add the Thai chilis, red bell pepper, peppercorns, garlic, and ginger to a food processor. Start chopping them up until you get a very fine mixture.
Transfer all of your mixture into a large bowl and add the coconut vinegar and palm vinegar. Have a little taste and maybe add in a bit of salt. Not too much though, because the chicharon will be plenty salty!
Calories: 2533kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 266g | Saturated Fat: 196g | Cholesterol: 163mg | Sodium: 732mg | Potassium: 817mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 604IU | Vitamin C: 42mg | Calcium: 93mg | Iron: 3mg