One of our go-to snack when we feel hungry in between meals is chicharon or pork crackling. Its crunchy, fatty, salty, filling, and low carb.
Chicharon brings me back to my childhood years when we holiday in our province. During the annual town fiesta, they make chicharon from the surplus pork skins. I would watch my Tata (my great grandpa) continuously stir pork skins in a giant kawa (cauldron). He would store it in bottles soaked in its own fat/lard. For breakfast, he would scoop out enough chicharon and fry them. And we would dip it vinegar and garlic and eat it with rice. Yum!
Now, when we crave pork cracklings, we buy pork skin in asian stores priced around $3.00 per kilo. With that, we can make a batch that can last for a week. Cheaper than chips!
Chicharon just needs 2 ingredients – pork skin and salt. The process I follow takes 2 days because drying/resting it overnight makes it extra crispy. I promise it’s worth the wait.
I hope you try this. If you have any queries feel free to ask. I would love to receive suggestions on what I can cook next time.
Preheat oven 150C.
Depending on the size, rub salt all over the pork skin (at least 2 teaspoons). Lay flat on a roasting dish.
Bake pork skin for 20 minutes or just until the skin is soft enough to be sliced easily.
Cool the baked skin until warm enough to handle. Place on a chopping board with the skin side down. Trim off excess fat and try to make it even as possible. It would help with the cooking later on. (The fat trimmings will also be cooked so no waste.)
Slice skin into 3cm squares. Return in roasting dish and bake for another 30 minutes (Alternatively, you can fry it in a pan) until skin is bubbly. It will produce lots and lots of fat/oil.
Transfer cooked pork skin into baking sheet lined with paper towel. Allow to dry overnight. Keep the fat/lard. We will use it to fry the pork skin once dry.
Heat up pork lard in a small saucepan. Fry pork skin in small batches. You may need to fry it twice for a bubblier, crispier, crunchier chicharon.
Once cooled, store leftover chicharon in an airtight container (preferably glass containers). It lasts up to 5 days. In case it becomes chewy, just refry it.