Monday, September 12, 2005

Isaw & Binagis

Isaw: Intestine & the Omentum In our barkada's egroup the exchanges happen fast and furious. The egroup could be called the egroup of flying daggers. To an outsider it would seem like a tempest in a teacup but that is the nature of our friendship, it thrives on the free exchange of ideas. And even if things get somewhat lively, at the end of the day or days ( depending on the fall-out) things get settled. As you might guess talk sometimes center on politics, gossip, entertainment, personal affairs (or lack of it) and of course food. The latest productive thread was about the favourite merienda of future athritis sufferers and people with high cholesterol levels, the one and only ISAW. A normal food thread about a chinese restaurant in Greenhills led to the discussion of food dearly missed. It turned out that the isaw or barbecue intestine or isaw was sorely missed. Isaw a common street food in the Philippines comes in three forms depending on source chicken, pig and cow. Chicken intestine is commonly called IUD, due to its shape. Pig and cow intestine when barbecued is just called isaw. The dish is quite tasty and unhealthy, its a rich source of cholesterol and uric acid. And improperly cleaned and cooked will probably send the eater to the hospital. Over the years, I have been warned of the health risks of eating isaw. Isaw is eaten as merienda or snacks by students and teetolers and for those inclined to drink of Bacchus it is eaten as pulutan, or food that acompanies alcoholic beverages. Isaw is tasty - I guess its the fat, it is said to be a flavour enhancer much like msg. Isaw or intestine is also the main ingredient in chihcaron or cracklings. The whole intestine can be turned into chicharon. As my friend Jay explained "Ang omentum or mesentery is the fatty membrane that anchors the intestines to the body wall dorsally and ventrally. This is separated from the intestines so both can be turned into chicharon bulaklak and chicharon bituka." Imagine eating cripsy omentum. Actually if you roast the omentum its actually quite tasty. Binagis or Binagkis One of the other food that was brought up was a dish called Binagis or Binagkis. I first tasted the dish when my uncle cooked it for us after coming back from Zambales, it was specialty in those parts. The dish was made up of the diced heart, liver and kidney of a pig. The ingredients are parboiled and sauted in broth, garlic, capsicum and onion. And then seasoned with salt and black pepper. I mentioned Binagis in the exchange we were diverting from isaw to betamax (another type of street food) to other dishes. Punay asked me what binagis was. I had an idea about it but I needed more data. So I checked the internet and it yielded two variants of the recipe: Binagis Del Monte version Binagis (Sautéed Variety Meats) Wow Sarap version Not quite sure if this the same recipe my uncle used. I must ask him when he drops by the house. We Filipinos & Eating Filipinos like to eat and that is no exageration. Our focus on masarap na ulam would make Apicius grin from ear to ear. And we in general like rich foods. But this does not seem to have been the case before. At least according to Rizal. In Noli Me Tangere, I remember passages referring to meal that were to be eaten only sundays, meat and special meals. The ill-fated Sisa was preparing a special meal of fish(?) and pako salad for her sons Crispin and Basilio. For those who have read the book, you know that this was not meant to be and a greater tragedy awaited Sisa, Basilio and Crispin. One can also remember the special meal prepared by Kapitan Tiago for Crisostomo Ibarra, tinola. And of course during the dinner the contravida Padre Damaso, much to his irritation, was served the neck part of the chicken. So much memories stirred from the our virtual talk of isaw. ----------------------------------------------------------------- Additional post for today: Books from the book fair I waited till the last day to go to the book fair. Despite the change in venue a lot of people went to the event. And I probably know now why they switched venue from a mall to the World Trade Center along Roxas. After several years, NBS and Powerbooks participated in the event. Read


Blogger benjiedlp said...

ever notice how we pinoys love talking about food (best dishes, great desserts, nice restaurants) --WHILE we are eating?

9/13/2005 03:13:00 AM  
Blogger juned said...

Benjiedlp, we sure do :)

9/13/2005 07:49:00 AM  

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