Remember a few weeks ago I was lamenting the lack of chicharrones up here? Turns out there’s a carniceria right across from her bus stop, and she’s been kind enough to get some for me – twice – even though she’s sort of freaked out by the hanging carcasses.
The first bag was the dark, meaty ones. The ones waiting for me on my desk this morning were the ones I’m used to from L.A./Orange County with the crunchy skin and just a little meat.
When you can’t get chicharon, you can easily make some with pork fat scraps. Toss them in a medium heat pan & let them cook down in their own rendered fat. Then, while they’re still hot, salt, pepper, & garlic powder to taste.
A few years back when we were still living in NJ, my wife and I went to a Cuban restaurant in Somerville (or Somerset, I always mix them up.) Anyway, we ordered the the chicharrones and they were pretty good, until I pulled out a piece of snout with some whiskers still intact…
A few years ago I was working the night shift on a loading dock at a fruit packing plant. One night, one of the Mexican forklift drivers and I were having dinner in our little break room. He asked me if I wanted a burrito, claimed that they were delicious and that his grandma had made them. Well, of course, anytime you get offered burritos from a Mexican grandma you must partake. I bit into it and whatever it was had the texture and consistency of a wet sponge doused in Tapatio and rolled in a homemade flour tortilla. I am a huge fan of both Tapatio and homemade flour tortillas - the wet sponge, not so much.
After choking it down, I asked him what it was. He asked me if I knew what* chicharrones* were and I replied that yes, in fact, I was both very familiar and a big fan of deep fried pig skin.
“It’s chicharrones but Grandma doesn’t fry them in oil… she just boils them.”
Well there is a version like that. One taco joint I like serves it stewed in a green chile sauce of some sort, folded into corn tortillas. It’s great, but I doubt it’s healthy! I admit it’s an acquired taste.
Yeah, when I get chicharrones tacos around here, they’re quite often of the boiled variety. (Actually, I don’t think I’ve had the crispy chicharrones in a taco. They’re usually simmered in a sauce of some sort.) I like 'em all. Pork fat is good.
Worse than that. (And, of course, I’m speaking culinarily. Although you have to admit OC has plenty of good Vietnamese food.) I’m in the WC (pun intentional) – Whatcom County, just south of the Canadian border. On my non-telecommuting days I work in Seattle.
I’ll have to ask her. I think she lives in West Seattle, and catches a bus in White Center.