Satisfy your bagnet cravings with Ilocos Norte's "chicharon"

IMAGE At Maculangan via Yummy.ph

Time to do the "bagnet dance"! This deep-fried pork dish (or slab of heaven?) is one of the reasons you should head up North.


Take cue from the gang of the recent hit coming-of-age flick I'm Drunk, I Love You: No one can ever say no to a scrumptious and sinful platter of crispy bagnet.

And we know where to find one of the best!

Crunchy, savory, indulgent: The Ilocano bagnet is boiled and deep-fried to achieve the crispy, crunchy pork skin.

It's a cross between crispy pata and lechon kawali, both of which have crispy meat that is not too dry.

In Paoay, Ilocos, Herencia's bagnets are popular while in Batac, Ilocos, a spot called Malabed Toledo Snack Hauz has been making bagnet since 1960.

Emiliana Malabed and her team churn out 35 to 40 kilos of bagnet every day and sells them at their stall in the local market.

Their bagnet involves boiling pork chunks in water until they are tender, then the meat is removed.

The water is left to boil until only the fatty oil remains.

They add a bit of lard to the same pot and the pork is fried in its own oil until the skin becomes tough.

It is fried to perfection until the skin becomes crunchy cracklings or chicharon.

Yummy magazine contributor Mira Angeles, whose family hails from Ilocos, offers some tips on how to make bagnet extra crispy and tasty: "Some add sukang Iloko while boiling the pork.

"It's also important to drain the pork after boiling and refrigerate the drained pork overnight if you can.

"While deep-frying, you can prick the pork skin so bubbles can appear, making the skin extra crunchy."



How to recreate your own bagnet at home?

Read the recipe on Yummy.ph

This story originally appeared on YUMMY.PH.

* Minor edits have been made by the Pep.ph editors.


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