– Alright, we are here in sunny Los Angeles, ^and we’re gonna be doing an episode on pork. ^- [Andrew] So we’ve done American barbecue pork ribs before. – Oh yeah, well today we’re doing pork Filipino-style. I am so excited for Filipino food, let’s go. Today on Worth It, we’re gonna be trying three Filipino pork dishes at three drastically different price points to find out which one is the most worth it at it’s price. I have quite the number of Filipino friends telling me make a Worth It episode around Filipino food. – Okay, humble brag. – ‘Cause I have so many friends? – Yeah. – Oh no, I don’t have that many friends. I just pretend like I do. I only have two friends and they’re in this car. (laughing) – That’s a good moment to introduce the fact that we have four people in the car. (laughing) – [Steven] That’s Annie. – Cool, so. – The first place we’re going to is called RiceBar. We’re gonna eat with a friend, her name is Allie. She’s Filipino, she loves pork. – Pork equals pig, is that correct? – Porky the Pig, that’s right. Oh man, I just got sad. I imagined eating Porky the Pig. ^(upbeat music) ^- I’m Charles Olalia, chef, owner of RiceBar ^here in downtown Los Angeles. – What type of establishment is RiceBar? – Everyday Filipino fair, something that you’d only find in homes, you know like the holy trinity of breakfast: garlic rice, which is essential to the Philippines, the egg, and a longanisa. So the pork longanisa, it’s essential Filipino sausage. The one we make is from my region of Pampanga, but we’ve added a little bit of L.A. flair to it already, so it’s a seven ounce sausage, more geared towards the appetite of how we eat over here. We start off with fresh ground pork. We don’t ground the fat, we actually dice it. It gives better texture to the sausage. Strain out for two days, stuff it in a natural hog casing, and let it cure again for another three days. The garlic, the pepper, the sugar, the salt can really penetrate that meat and by the time we serve it to the guest, the flavors are way more robust. We cook it slowly on the griddle until it caramelizes so you have a beautiful glaze on the sausage. Then we pair that off in a garlic friend rice, and we make a very intense garlic oil, like a one-to-one ration of garlic to oil. We got our rice toasted and coat raw, then we put our garlic stock in a little bit of annatto water to give it the yellow color. You have all the flavor to the very inside of the grain. – [Andrew] So it’s cooked in that garlic stock? – Yes, and then we pair that off with pickled papaya which rounds off the whole dish. ^- [Steven] Wow, I want that one. ^- Hello. ^- Hi. ^- This is Allie. ^So you’re Filipino. ^(laughing) – Longanisa is something that I used to have growing up, usually at carnivals and fairs, that kind of thing. Or you would like have it for breakfast. – So this brings you back? – Yeah! Have you guys eaten Filipino-style before? You have the spoon in the right hand, fork in the left hand, and you shovel the food onto the spoon. Do you want to try it? – [Andrew] Yeah. – [Steven] Together! – [Allie] Okay, ready? – [All] Cheers. – It’s got that sweetness to it, huh? (laughing) There’s so many things going on with this sausage. Good texture, and then it’s a little spice, and it’s just like everything’s nice. – [Andrew] I love sausage, sausage might be my single favorite food. – Why? – I grew up eating a lot of sausage. If you think about what is going on into making a sausage, it’s crazy but also genius. Repackaging an animal into like a delicious little flavor missal. (laughing) – It’s kinda gross, actually. – So this is the spicy vinegar that you– – Ooh, let’s hit that up. – One of the major flavors of the Philippines, this sourness. And so that spicy vinegar goes well with everything. – Oh yeah. – Oh! (laughing) – Yeah, sweetness in the sausage with the spicy vinegar, that’s it right there. – So this is like a perfect Filipino breakfast. Egg, rice, some kind of meat product. – I could get obsessed with the garlic rice. – It’s so amazing. – Like, that alone, I would travel far and wide for it. – It’s really good to have something like this in a restaurant, because I know growing up I only had it at home and I can like take my friends here, who have never had this before. – Are you ready, this is gonna be a big bite. (Allie laughing) – Whoa! ^- What do you think? Adam just whispered it’s really good. The quieter he says it, the more he means it. – The other dish we’re gonna have is our house made spam, tocino. Tocino in the Philippines is kinda like our bacon. Again, diced fat, high in sugar, very simple. We cook ’em in a spam can in a water bath, let that rest for about three days. Then we slice it off, brulee it with a little bit of sugar so we get the nice caramelization. We’re gonna pair that off with black rice, an heirloom variety from south of the Philippines, very high in anthocyanins, just like with blueberries and spinach. ^Some pickled radishes, and some choi. – [Steven] Okay! – That is beautiful. – [Andrew] Yeah. – It’s got color, texture, God, there’s nothing I loved more than spam as a kid. – [All] Cheers. (Steven groans) – Hot damn. – Mhm, oh damn. – [Allie] That is so good. – The rice is like seriously blowing me away. ^Why does it almost taste cocoa-y to me? – [Steven] Very delicious, and with all these other ingredients in there, look at that! – [Allie] It looks like a vegetable garden. – If only spam could grow from the ground. – On trees. – Thank you so much for joining us! – You’re very welcome! ^- Thank you for having us. – I think family style is pretty much the only way to eat if you’re Filipino because so much of the food is about community and about family. – Would you even say that we’re family? – You and I? – I mean, the three of us, yeah. – Oh. (laughing) We’re something. (laughing) – RiceBar, what a treat. Before we go into our pork fact, ^we’re gonna be hitting up Jollibee ^for a quick halo-halo break. ^- [Andrew] Oh look, there’s the bee. ^- [Steven] Bee’s got a big bosom. – Do you know what bosom is? – Isn’t it your butt? – No, it’s a women’s chest area. (laughing) – I did not know that. (upbeat music) – Wild! I like this whole cake on top. (Steven moans) – Pork fact! ^Only about 30% of pork in consumed fresh, ^the rest is cured or smoked ^and eaten as bacon, ham, and sausage. – Bacon, ham, sausage, that’s a pretty strong team of foods right there. – Right, they should be holding the ball, playing the games. – Holding the pigskin. – Boom! – We’re gonna stop at a place called LASA, get some thick cut pork belly! I’ve been told that I don’t ^have the voice of a radio person. (Steven inhales) – Roasted. ^(upbeat music) ^- I’m chef Chad Valencia, co-owner of LASA. We’re a seasonal, Filipino-inspired restaurant here in Chinatown, L.A. – From my understanding, lasa in Tagalog is flavor? – Flavor or taste. – Can you talk about what that means for you guys? – It’s based on our life experiences, so this is not traditional Filipino food by any means. My brother and I come from California restaurants, so we follow the seasons. What’s popping at the market is gonna dictate what ingredients are gonna get used. We’ll think what can coincide with Filipino dishes but isn’t that specific ingredient. For instance, in springtime, there’s a sour soup called sinigang. We use rhubarb to sour the broth. That’s not traditional by any means, but if any Filipino were to taste that broth, they would know is sinigang. – And you’re using rhubarb ’cause that’s what you have here in California? – Exactly. We’re gonna eat our twice-cooked pork belly. It’s based on a Filipino dish called kalabasa ginataan, which means squash stewed in coconut. There’s always the addition of pork product and shrimp product in a lot of vegetable dishes in the Philippines, so we’ve flipped it on it’s head and turned it into an entree. We take skin-on, boneless pork belly slabs and slowly render on a plancha so that the skin ends up crispy. We stew the kabocha squash in coconut milk until it’s extremely tender, and then we puree it. And then we lock roast Chinese long beans, and then we take mustard greens and we dress that in butter and vinegar. So we have this fresh salad to kinda cut through the richness of the belly and even the kabocha and coconut. People are always quick to say oh, you guys are doing Filipino-fusion. Filipino food is already fusion by a way of China, Spain, America. We’re not doing anything that different, ^we’re just doing California Filipino food. ^- [Steven] Let’s try it. ^- [Andrew] Yeah, I’m ready to eat. ^- Green mango soda, cheers. – Oh, gentle bubbles. Sodas are better when the bubbles are gentle. – Agreed, let’s eat. – I’m gonna do a little puree taste-test solo mode before I get into this. – Alright. – Cheers. Whoa! – It’s almost like pumpkin pie. – At first I was like, okay this is squash. And then there’s this whole other flavors that run across your mouth. – Okay so here we got a thick cut pork belly. (laughing) it’s like a steak of pork! – [Andrew] Imma do a little squash. – Yes, I’m going long beans, too. Cheers! (calm music) (Steven moaning) – The hard exterior of this pork belly, (tapping) very satisfying. (food crunching) And that. – [Steven] Crunch! – How fun is that? – It’s all about into the– – The bellies of things, you know? – Yeah. – Of the beast. – Of The Rock. – [Andrew] The Rock? – Yeah you know, The Rock like his abs. – Oh, yeah, sure. – Yeah, he’s got a nice belly. We share a lot of dishes on this show. – Uh huh. – And we’re often times like huddled over one small plate. – Uh huh. – Like nibbling away, this was created to be shared. – That’s right. – Big thick cut pork belly. (laughing) Right in the middle, on a huge plate. Hey, come over here. Family style.
– Family boy. – You wanna double down? – Double down! – Ugh, why’d you do that so slowly? Hold out your hand, and I’m gonna fly the camera into it. (whooshing) – We’re cool. (laughing) Plot twist! We’re in New York City, whoo! And we’re here because this is a very special dish that we’re gonna try. In fact, it’s not even a dish, it is a feast. But before we get there. – I know what’s happening. – Oh, we all know what’s happening. – It’s no longer a surprise. – That guy knows what’s happening. – Pork fact! – Ow! ^Hundreds of years ago, all pork was referred to as bacoun, ^or as it was spelled back then, bacoun? B-A-C-O-U-N. – Yeah, you have to spell it! ^- It comes from the old teutonic, backe, ^that referred to the back of the hog. ^- Bacon, bacoun. – How’s that for a fact? – Borderline factual. (laughs) Pretty good, it’s pretty good. – Pretty good, thank you, thank you very much. We’re going to a restaurant called Jeepney. They serve what’s called a kamayan feast. In the middle of it, we’re gonna have a whole pig, stuffed. – Ooh. (tropical music) ^- My name’s Nicole Ponseca, ^and we’re at Jeepney here in the East Village. You’re gonna eat Nueva York style lechon, and we’re also gonna do a kamayan feast. – [Steven] What is kamayan? – Kamayan is basically to eat with your hands. We lay out all the food on banana leaves very beautifully, because we know that we eat with our eyes first. But it wasn’t really like that for me growing up. Kamayan was just my dad in the kitchen, eating on a plate just with our hands, like really simple, really humble. My whole mission is how can I help spread Filipino food, but also how can I take anything that I was ever embarrassed or ashamed about and make it into something that I’m really proud about. So we decided to do it this beautiful way of introducing Filipino food in culture, and Chef Miguel’s gonna tell you about the dishes that we’re having today. ^- For this particular kamayan, ^we created a special feast for you guys. We have some dinuguan, some banana ribs, dampa fry, which is our marinated whole red snapper. Let’s not forget about the chicken adobo, considered the national dish of the Philippines . Then you have the star of the show, our whole lechon. – [Steven] What is lechon, can you kinda walk us into that? – [Miguel] Lechon is a whole pig. Traditionally, we would be roasting it over an open fire pit. We are in the East Village, we would probably get our asses busted for doing something like that. So we cook our lechon in the oven. We’re gonna stuff it with lemongrass, onion, salt, pepper, and a shit load of love and longanisa, bring that temperature up to 500 just to crisp that skin and sear everything, so we want to trap all those juices in there, then we lower that temperature and let it roast slowly so that when you guys get it and crack open that skin, that meat is just falling off the bone. The pig that you guys will be having today is about 22 pounds, so. (laughing) You guys better be hungry. – We are extremely hungry. Also we’re bringing in backup, what 10 friends, you think that’s enough people? – [Miguel] I think 10 friends is a good number. – Thank you all to our friends for joining us today. I just wanna raise a toast to all y’all for coming out. Cheers guy! – [All] Cheers! – Oh, we have some hot towels coming. (all cheering) Okay! ^- A common phrase we use for cheers is tagay, T-A-G-A-Y, tagay. – [All] Tagay! (calming music) (laughing) – Yeah, feeling it? – I’m ready to eat with my hands. – I’m gonna teach you all how to do kamayan. You make a little rice ball, keep it here in the front fingers. – And then you push it into your mouth with you thumb. – [Nicole] Yeah. – Oh! – My aunt used to eat like this all the time, but I would refuse because I was a bratty little kid. (laughing) But now, I wish I had paid attention because I don’t know what I’m doing! – [All] Cheers! – It’s a good sausage. – That tastes like home. – Do you want to cut into the lechon, is that cool? (shouting and laughing) Sorry! – Nah, that’s my fault. I’m wanna hand this to Andrew, he’s usually the one who handles that. – [Nicole] Yeah. – [All] Oh! – [Steven] Look at that steam popping out! – There’s sausages in there. – Oh my gosh! (all chatting) Why’s it so important, the eating with your hands aspect? – It’s a way of respecting what you’re eating, and also interacting with other people at the table to catch up on what’s going on in your life, you know, this very intimate moment, vulnerable moment of eating with your hands. – I believe Brenda wanted some ear. Do a little quick taste test here. – [All] Oh! – [Man] Brenda, you monster! – Not as strong, oh! That’s more than just ear. – [Woman] Andrew. – It’s like a fortune cookie. (food crunching) (Andrew moaning) – It tastes like a fine bag of that pork you bought. – [Steven] Mm, mhm! – The cartilage is almost like glass. It’s like rock candy. – Exactly. – Yeah. – A salty, delicious. – It’s so intense! – Like you’re eating the wisdom of the universe right now. You would never know the kind of gossip this pig hears. (all laughing) – There’s a lot happening on this table. – (bleep) yeah. – Do you think that there is a single bite that you personally find the most delicious? – Yeah, for me (laughing) I’m gonna go straight for the cheek on that pig. – [Steven] Oh man. – [All] Oh! ^- [Andrew] It’s so fatty. (laughing) Here, I’ll let you have that. (tropical music) – It’s like eating a, you know, melted butter. That’s what it feels like. – The cheek meat is insane. – Alright, give me some. (all shouting) – Wow. – That’s delicious! (laughing) It’s so fatty! – [Andrew] Wait, I don’t know where it went. I just swallowed it. – [Miguel] Second dish, adobo dilaw. First we take the chicken and we poach it for about three minutes, just to tighten that skin so when we pan sear it, that skin isn’t falling apart or breaking. We put it in the pot with garlic, and bay leaf, vinegar, soy, and tumeric, and let that cook until it’s nice and tender. Take that later, and we’re gonna finish it off by putting it under salamander, getting that skin nice and crispy. And we’ll finish it off with the sauce. – [Andrew] Okay, so I think everybody should try the adobo. – The national dish of the Philippines. (upbeat music) – Chicken cheers. – Chicken cheers! – That part’s good. (Steven groaning) – That’s so soft! – This is the best chicken I’ve ever had, honestly. – Oh my God, the parade of meats is insane in this dinner. – So the other hidden gem of this meal is the dinuguan. – [Miguel] It’s a pork blood stew, one of my favorite dishes. We take pork butt, which we marinate in salt, pepper, garlic, and vinegar. It’s gonna permeate through the meat and it’s gonna make it more flavorful. We let it sit overnight, sear it off in a cast iron, place that in our brazing pan, take some aromatics, onions and garlic, along with pork broth. Cook until it’s nice and soft, and then we’ll be adding the blood once it comes out. It thickens, it becomes this rich, chocolate color, and that’s ready for serving. – It’s right in front of you, if you see it right here. It’s blood stew. Cheers guys. – [Andrew And Allie] Cheers. – [Andrew] Oh man. – It’s almost smokey, it’s very rich. – It’s almost like minerally, so even though it’s likes really rich and deep, the minerality kind of cuts it a little bit. – It’s crazy the range of pork flavors that you get here. Sweet longanisa and the really fatty lechon, but you also have this really deep stew. – I just wanna say thank you everybody for joining us for this awesome meal. (cheering) Is there anything else you wanna say past the Filipino food? – (foreign language) Just, let’s eat. – Let’s eat, cheers guys. – [All] Cheers! – Goodnight! (chanting Adam) (upbeat music) – [Allie] Yeah? ^- Pretty good, right? ^Cool. – This is hard, but I’m gonna ask you, and I expect an answer because that’s what we do on this show. Which Filipino pork dish was the most worth it to you at it’s price? – Every place was the perfect thing in it’s category. LASA would be my perfect date-night meal. RiceBar is the ultimate fill-you-up-good snack. And Jeepney is just the perfect celebration meal. Choosing between them is just like– – I could tell you mine. – What kind of day are you gonna, okay, ^- [Steven] RiceBar. ^- [Andrew] Oh (beep). ^- I loved that restaurant feeling ^that you could be family with strangers there. Ugh, it’s so hard, but that’s, yeah, yup. – Yeah. – Your turn! ^- I think Jeepney’s slightly edges it out for me. ^The format of the meal is so fun ^that you’re guaranteed a memorable meal. Something about eating with your hands, shoulder to shoulder with people. – This is hard, this hurts. LASA, no way-sa!
– Adam chooses LASA. – Three way split. – I think I have a crush on Filipino cuisine. It’s stuck in my mind, sweet meat with a vinegar touch, like I just want more. – [Steven] You wake up thinking about it. – [Andrew] You go to sleep tasting it in your belches. – [Steven] Oh yes!