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Friday, June 4, 2010

Recipe: Pork Sisig

My Husband and I sometimes miss the night life in Manila.  We met at work but it was at a bar that we were officially introduced and later on became part of one barkada (group of friends).  One of the things we enjoyed then were our Friday night gimiks with our barkada (night out with friends).  Hanging out at a bar would almost always mean ordering Sisig to go along with a bottle of beer.

Sizzling Sisig is a Filipino dish made from parts of pig’s head and liver, seasoned with calamansi and chili.  If not eaten as an accompaniment to alcoholic drinks, this goes well with steaming rice.

Since my Husband and I miss having yummy Sisig every now and then, but haven’t found a place that serves it as delicious as the ones from the Philippines, I thought of making my own Sisig.

The easiest way to make Sisig is buying a pig’s head, chop the skin and ears into bits, then fry it with onion, garlic, chili, etc. (No more boiling, grilling or marinating).  In the suburb where we live, we have access to a shop where we can buy pig’s heads.  The catch is, your Sisig can be very oily (from too much fats) and not-so-healthy.  So scratch that.  Instead, I made a not-so-fatty Sisig at home.

Making my own sisig, as I discovered, was tedious.  It comes in four phases: boiling, grilling, marinating and frying.  

Here are the ingredients and what you need to do in every phase:

Boiling Phase
1/2 kilo Pork Neck
1/2 kilo Pork Shoulder/Rashers/Belly
1/4 kilo Minced Pork
1/4 kilo Liver (pork/chicken)
2 cups Water
1 cup Pineapple Juice
4 pcs Star Anise
1 tsp whole black peppers

Combine all ingredients mentioned above in a pot and bring to boil.  Simmer for about an hour or until tender.  Drain and leave until cool.

Grilling Phase:

Slice pork and liver in smaller pieces.  Place in baking pan and put inside the oven.  Grill for 30 minutes or until pork in golden brown and crispy.  Let it cool for awhile and then chop into small bits.

(The traditional way of doing this part of cooking sisig is placing pork in skewers and grilling over charcoal briquettes.  Since I'm doing it my way and to save myself time from putting pork into skewers and using another equipment, I grilled the pork via my oven instead.)

Marinating Phase:
Marinade Seasoning Mix

1 medium-sized onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
4 chili (either red or green), chopped
1 tbsp ginger, sliced into small pieces
2 pcs Bay leaf
1/4 cup Vinegar
1/4 cup Calamansi juice (or lemon juice)
1/4 cup Pineapple juice
Salt and Pepper to taste
Mix chopped meat and Marinade Seasoning Mix in a bowl.  Keep marinated mixture in the fridge for 2-3 hours. 

Frying Phase:
1 tbsp Olive Oil
1 Egg (or you can add more, depends on how many you want)

In a frying pan, fry the marinated pork in a tablespoon of olive oil (or your choice of oil).  Stir every once in a while until pork is golden brown and crispy.  Make a hole in the centre and crack an egg. 

I have a special frying pan for my Sizzling Sisig and it's what I also use to serve this dish.  It's actually a square frying pan for steaks and it's thick, so it keeps the Sisig warm while we have dinner. 

(In restaurants, Sizzling Sisig is served using a hot plate.)

Voila!  My own version of Sisig!  Less fats from pork, less oil, more meat. 

The first time I cooked this, I made sure we had beer at home.  We had this for dinner and my Husband loved it!!! 
It may be tedious but seeing my Husband's face lit up the moment I served this was very much worth all the effort.  He even asked me to cook it again the week after.

Bon Appetit!