Why do Filipinos eat so much pig?

You may know that in the Philippines they eat pig all the time. In fact, aside from chicken, no other meats are regularly eaten there. It’s all about the pork! And Filipinos don’t leave anything to waste, either, as the head, blood, offal, trotters, ears, intestines, and even the brains are cooked for a supposedly tasty dish!

lechon4

Lechon is the most recognisable pork dish in the Philippines. After seasoning, the entire pig is skewered on a large stick and cooked over a pit filled with charcoal. The stick is turned in a rotisserie action until the pig is roasted on all sides for several hours. The process of cooking and basting usually results in making the pork skin crisp and this is a distinctive feature of the dish. As such, lechon is a popular Filipino food for special occasions that the whole family can enjoy together.

Dinuguan
Dinuguan

Dinuguan is a savoury stew of meat and offal that is simmered in a rich and spicy gravy of pig blood, garlic, and vinegar. English translation of this dish is “pork blood stew”. It is frequently considered an unusual or alarming dish to foreigners, though it is rather similar to European-style blood sausage, or British black pudding in a saucy stew form. Dinuguan can also be served without using any offal, using only choice cuts of pork.

Tenga
Tenga

Tenga is considered to be something a bar snack and it is basically deep fried pig’s ears. They can be seasoned with olive oil and herbs before or after serving and they make a great accompaniment to a bottle of San Miguel after work.

Isaw
Isaw

Isaw is a street food from the Philippines, made from barbecued pig intestines. The intestines are cleaned, turned inside out, and cleaned again, repeating the process several times. They are then either boiled, then grilled, or immediately grilled on sticks. They are usually dipped in vinegar and eaten with onion and peppers.

Crispy Pata
Crispy Pata

Crispy Pata is a Filipino dish consisting of deep fried pig trotters or knuckles served with a soy-vinegar dip. It can be served as party fare or an everyday dish. Many restaurants serve boneless crispy pata as a specialty.

Sisig
Sisig

Sisig is a dish made from parts of the pig’s brain, and is usually heavily seasoned with calamansi and chili peppers. The dish is said to have originated by locals who needed a use for spare pig’s heads that hadn’t been put into existing meals.

Eating pigs or eating like pigs? You be the judge! Although, the crispy pata does sound quite nice to me…

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11 thoughts on “Why do Filipinos eat so much pig?

  1. Isaw is actually chicken intestines. those in the pictures are too small to be that of the pig. street slang term for Isaw is IUD, because it looked like a birth control item.

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  2. Heading very fast to vegetarianism- UGH! The photos of the entire pig with the pole up its …well…..you know….is enough for me. Anyone seen the movie BABE? Other than this one blog- I really enjoy reading about your adventures….

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    1. Funny thing is, lots of countries eat roasted pig on a spit like that, including Indonesia and even Germany! I am a lover of pork, but sometimes it is hard to eat meat like that when you see the pig impaled.

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