Chicharon Bulaklak or deep-fried ruffled fat is a popular Filipino appetizer. It is often consumed with alcoholic drinks and is best eaten when dipped in spicy vinegar. Chicharon bulaklak is at is best form right after frying when it is still warm and the texture is extra crispy.
I thought that Chicharon bulaklak is composed of nothing but fat. I had this notion for a long time, but I proven myself wrong when I tried to research more about it. Is it really fat or a part of the intestine?
It seems that ruffled fat is not really fat nor it is an intestine, but rather a tissue. It is the connector of the internal organs to the pig’s body – which is known as a mesentery. Learning this made me feel less guilty thinking that I am not consuming lesser fat, but we still need to be cautious of our intake for our overall health.
Have you tried eating chicharon bulaklak? I had this a few days ago and it was really good. However, leftovers are not that good anymore because the texture is not that crispy as it was after frying. What I did was to recycle the left over chicharon bulaklak and prepare a congee out of it. It similar to Goto or Arroz Caldo, and I called it Chicharon Bulaklak Congee. It is perfect especially with lemon or calamansi.
Try this Chicharon Bulaklak Recipe. Cheers!
Chicharon Bulaklak Recipe
- 2 lbs. ruffle fat
- 1 tablespoon whole peppercorn
- 5 dried bay leaves
- 2 ½ tablespoons sea salt
- 4 cups canola oil
- 6 cups water
- Arrange the ruffle fat, whole peppercorn, 2 tablespoons salt, and bay leaves in a cooking pot. Pour-in water. Let boil. Cover and then simmer for 1 hour.
- Turn the heat off. Remove the boiled ruffle fat from the pot and then let the water drip-off.
- Rub the remaining salt all over the ruffled fat. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat the cooking oil in a deep fryer or a deep cooking pot.
- When the oil gets hot, slowly add-in the ruffled fat. Deep fry in low to medium heat until the texture becomes crisp and the color turns medium brown.
- Remove from the deep fryer or cooking pot. Arrange in a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the oil.
- Serve with spiced vinegar.
- Share and enjoy!