Thursday, January 24, 2013

ABC Wednesday | B - Bagnet

Late post for ABC Wednesday.

When one speaks of Ilocos, one of the foods that will come to mind would be Bagnet. It's quite similar to Lechon Kawali, but what makes this different is that this uses the double-fry technique making it really crispy.

Sister! Bagnet on Display

When you travel to either Ilocos Norte or Ilocos Sur provinces, the Bagnet is a common thing to see in the public markets and even on the road side. It's sold per kilo, but because it's three times more expensive than raw pork (that's because the meat shrinks), some people just opt to dine at restaurants serving this. Of course, there are more people who would buy bagnet per kilo and eat it at the comforts of their homes.

Some people cook their own bagnet - usually done by boiling big chunks of pork on water seasoned with salt (some add peppercorns and bay leaf) until tender, then hang to dry overnight. It will be deep fried in oil (authentic Ilocos Bagnet is cooked in lard - meaning its own oil), hang to dry again, and fried for the second time. Bubbles at the skin is naturally produced when cooked in oil, but some cooks would stab the skin part with fork to achieve such effect.

Bagnet for Dinner

In Ilocos, this is usually eaten with rice, and the popular partner would be KBL or Kamatis, Bagoong, Lasona (tomatoes, fish paste, and shallots).

Kare-Kareng Bagnet

Some restaurants now incorporate Bagnet into several dishes and is used in other dishes like Pinakbet and Munggo. Innovation keeps going and nearly two years ago I was able to eat a dish called "Kare Kareng Bagnet," a dish that usually uses ox tripe or ox tail and even pork leg.

Most of the time, I see Bagnet looking dry and tough to chew, but really, it's crispy yet tender. However, as much as this one is very delicious, it is advised not to eat much of it because it's high in cholesterol. Well, I guess there's no harm when eaten moderately. :)

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Jenn, the Foodie

I come from a family who loves cooking and eating. I never had any formal training in cooking and that I taught myself how to cook based on the handed down recipes, but I could say that I can cook good food. In 2008, I started documenting my food trips for my travel blog, and since I have quite enough to start a food blog, might as well put all those food trips in one location. Thus, a food blog is born - thanks to the new Friendster Blogs. However, due to several problems, I was left with no choice but to pack bags again and move here instead. Here's the permanent address, promise! Enough talk, let the food trippin' begin! {Know More About Me}