Inasal na Liempo
Inasal is a type of dish usually using chicken marinated in a mixture of calamansi, ginger, garlic, lemon grass, and coconut vinegar. After the marinating process this is then grilled over hot charcoal while continuously basted in a butter, lemon and annatto which gives it a distinct red orange colour. It is then served with rice, calamansi, soy sauce, chicken oil and “sinamak” vinegar, a vinegar prepared with palm vinegar, garlic, chili peppers and langkawas.
Inasal most probably was a very old recipe but its popularity in Manila just rose during the late 90’s when the Inasal restaurant start popping up. I still remember my best friend who owns a restaurant back in Butuan who introduced me to this dish, it was not popular in Manila back then so what he did was to air freight it to Manila for me to have a try, he even sponsored one of the dinner courses (200 servings) on our wedding day.
A very common dish in Visayas and is a specialty in the city of Bacolod, like the Puto Calasiao alley of Calasiao or the Pigar Pigar street of Dagupan, they also have an entire street market called “Manokan Country” dedicated to this dish. Today we will be making the pork version which is equally as amazing, hopefully you will like this recipe.
- 1kg pork belly, ¾-inch-thick cuts
- ½ thumb sized ginger, peeled
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled
- 4 stalks lemongrass, white part
- 1½ cups coconut vinegar
- ½ cup lemon juice
- ¼ cup fish sauce
- 3 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp baking soda
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tsp annatto powder
- ½ cup butter
- juice from 2 lemons
- ½ tsp salt
- In a food processor mix all marinade ingredients except for the baking soda.
- I an airtight container combine pork belly; marinade and the baking soda mix well while massaging the meat. Cover container then marinate for at least 6 hours.
- In a sauce pan mix together all basting ingredients and simmer in low heat for 2 minutes. Set aside.
- Prepare a charcoal grill then cook pork belly while occasionally basting it with the butter sauce until cooked.