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Lechon, lechon kawali, bicol express, sisig among best pork dishes worldwide

By NICK GARCIA Published May 12, 2023 10:00 am

Lechon, lechon kawali, bicol express, and sisig are among the best pork dishes in the world, according to an international aggregated food guide.

In TasteAtlas's list of 100 best pork dishes, lechon ranked 17th, lechon kawali 22nd, bicol express 23rd, and sisig 28th, getting scores above 4 out of 5.

TasteAtlas took note of the ingredients of the beloved Pinoy dishes, as well as the manner in which they're served.

Lechon is stuffed with aromatics like lemongrass, garlic, onion, and chives, then roasted on a large bamboo spit over an open fire. It's usually served in festive events like weddings and Christmas.

"Once the meat is properly roasted and falls off the bone, people tend to eat every part of the pig, and the crispy, reddish-brown, crackling skin is especially beloved," TasteAtlas said.

Lechon kawali, meanwhile, is a deep-fried pork belly with a golden brown crispy skin and tender, juicy meat.

It's first boiled in water filled with aromatics of one's choice—such as bay leaves, lemongrass, garlic, onion, peppercorn, and salt—if not plain water.

It's then cut into chunks and served with vinegar or liver sauce.

The main ingredients of bicol express include sliced pork, kakang gata, bagoong alamang, and loads of green and red chilis.

TasteAtlas cited the popular belief that it was invented by Laguna native Cely Kalaw, who then named the dish after the train service operating from Manila to Bicol.

Originating from Pampanga, sisig is made of boiled and grilled pig head or maskara, grilled chicken liver, vinegar, kalamansi, salt, pepper, onions, and chili. It's served on a sizzling plate and topped with a raw egg.

Modern takes, especially in the metro, include putting mayonnaise and crushed chicharon.

Topping the list is Mexico's carnitas, a pork dish that's slow-cooked and shredded, then served with tortillas accompanied by salsa, beans, guacamole, lime, and vegetables.

TasteAtlas has recognized Philippine cuisine several times.

In September 2022, it named lumpiang shanghai as among the world's best street food. In the same month, it also named five varieties of Filipino pancit as among the best noodle dishes in the world.

The Philippines also placed 19th in TasteAtlas's list of 50 best cuisines worldwide for June 2022.