How to make chicharron carnudo
At the request of Professor Salt, I'm moving this from the LA discussion board, where they helped me find the raw materials for Colombian-style chicharron (AKA chicharron carnudo). This is chicharron with some meat on it -- very different from the Mexican-style chicharron that is widely available in the US.
Buy some pork bellies (chicharron carnudo). I found mine at an Asian grocery store (99 Ranch) and at a Latino market (Vallarta). If you can, have the butcher cut it into 1-inch wide strips. The pieces will be 1 inch wide, about an inch thick, and probably six inches long.
In a skillet, heat some vegetable oil on medium-to-high heat. The oil should be about a quarter inch deep in the pan.
Score the chicharron strips about every inch. Cut towards the skin side, but do not cut through the skin.
Rub a little bit of baking soda on the skin side (this will make it crispier).
Rub a bit of salt on the chicarron.
Dredge the whole chicharron strip in flour.
Put the chicharron strip skin-side down in the skillet.
Once the skin is crispy, then flip the chicharron over until it is heated through. This should take 7-10 minutes.
Drain on a paper towel and eat when it has cooled a bit (or burn your tongue like me in impatient anticipation of the taste...)
Thanks, glutton. Didn't know about the baking soda trick, that's cool. Does the baking soda give the fry oil an off taste? I'm asking because I'd probably use fresh lard from the carniceria, and reuse whatever renders out. Maybe it's not worth it?
Here's glutton's post on the L.A board for those who missed it http://www.chowhound.com/topics/368737