Bagnet is a deep fried crispy pork belly dish that is similar to lechon kawali. It originated from Ilocos and is considered to be a top favorite among Filipinos. This is best served bagoong monamon. it is a dip made of fermented anchovies.
I like my bagnet to be as crispy as possible. Double frying is the method that we are using to make it happen. The pork belly is first boiled until tender then deep fried twice to attain the extra crispy texture. I also rub a some salt all over the pork before frying it to add some flavor.
While deep frying sounds easy enough for anyone to do, I want to remind you to take extra precaution. Hot oil splatters when combined with liquid. Since the pork belly is not totally dry when fried, the oil can react quickly and go crazy. Make sure that you use long tongs to handle the pork and cover the cooking pot with a splatter screen to control the oil.
I love to have bagnet with boiled okra and eggplant dipped in bagoong monamon . Sometimes, bagoong monamon is not always available in all locations. I seldom see it sold in the Filipino stores here in Chicago, so I use bagoong Balayan most of the time as an alternative. I simply add some lemon juice to make the bagoong taste better. There are also times when I have this with my yummy version of lechon sauce.
You can also use bagnet as an ingredient for pakbet.
Try this simple Bagnet Recipe. Let me know what you think.
- 2 to 2½ lbs. whole pork belly
- 1 medium red onion
- 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorn
- 1½ tablespoons salt
- 6 cloves crushed garlic
- 4 to 6 cups water
- 3 cups cooking oil
- Arrange the pork belly in a wide and deep cooking pot. Pour-in the water. Make sure that the pork belly is fully submerged in water. Let boil.
- Once the water starts to boil, add the garlic, onion, 1 tablespoon salt, and whole black peppercorn. Simmer for 30 to 40 minutes.
- Remove the boiled pork belly from the cooking pot and place in a plate. Let it cool to room temperature.
- Rub the remaining ½ tablespoon of salt all over the boiled pork belly. Let is stay for 10 to 20 minutes.
- Heat the cooking oil in a deep cooking pot. When the oil gets hot, gently put-in the pork belly and deep-fry in medium heat until the pork belly turns golden brown and the texture gets crispy. The oil will splatter during this process, so be careful. Make sure that you do not cover the cooking pot completely while deep frying. You can put a splatter guard on top of the cooking pot to control the oil.
- Once the pork belly is golden brown and crispy, remove it from the cooking pot and arrange in a plate lined with paper towel. Turn the stove off and let the pork belly cool down to room temperature.
- When the pork belly cools down, heat-up the oil on more time. Deep fry the same pork belly for the second time in medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes or until it gets extra crispy.
- Remove from the cooking pot and place in a plate lined with paper towel. Let the towel absorb the excess oil.
- Slice the pork bagnet into serving pieces and serve with bagoong monamon (also known as bugguong munamon) or even guinamos or bagoong Balayan. Note: you can squeeze lemon or calamansi on the bagoong to make it taste better.
- Share and enjoy!