Filipino Breakfast – Chicharones with Rice
You should have seen the excitement in my cousin’s eyes the other night. Her voice had changed and her facial expression changed as she opened a box that arrived from her friend in Florida. The box contained a nice stack of pork cracklings. She asked if I wanted a container, and of course I could not say no, so I took one, and began to ask questions. As my cousin’s are fairly new to Wisconsin, they did not think that cracklings existed in Wisconsin, and hence why they had them shipped from Florida. Obviously they do not know about El Rey, our Mexican supermarket, where not only cracklings are in abundance, but fresh ones at that!
I am no stranger to the pork crackling, but I was to the story I was about to hear. This is where the excitement was coming in, and to be honest, I was quiet amused about this excitement, to telling of a story about food, and how good it is. As she was telling the story, her husband was also excited about this dish that they commonly eat for breakfast.
At first, I was thinking pork cracklings for breakfast? With rice? What? Now, I am also no stranger to the Filipino breakfast, as I have had many with my father-n-law, typically a really great dish called Sinangag, a fried rice dish with garlic, and eggs. But chicharones? I had to find out more, and give this one a try, as they talked about ‘dizziness effects’. Later I found out that this can also be served as a snack, and can be treated on the same line as Sisig.
Well, I had this for breakfast, and I will admit, it is really good. Unhealthy of course, but really good.
- 1/2 cup of vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup of pork cracklings
- Cooked rice, warmed
- 3 tbsp White vinegar
Begin by bringing a small pan of oil to a medium-high heat, roughly 5 minutes. Toss in the cracklings, and let puff a bit, only a couple of minutes. Remove them with slotted spoon, and place them on a paper towel to drain off any excess oil. Place on a bed of rice, and serve with a small bowl of vinegar. Now, dip the fried pork skin into the vinegar, eat, and then throw back a little rice. The combination of the vinegar and the pork skin is truly amazing.
Now, I have to gather my Filipino relatives, with hopes on their islands, to gather around some pulutan and some cold beer.