Hello, dear readers! I’ve been a bad blogger for not posting for ever so long; I can attest that life’s stresses can really make you lost your appetite in a big way. But never ye mind, as my friend Floyd would say. I’m back, so let’s get on with the eats!
I am a serious fan of roast pork. So much, in fact, that I currently have three recipes for it, eat it whenever I’m particularly famished, and it’s the dish I make a beeline for whenever it’s part of a buffet. (Oh, and the leftovers are perfect for chopping up fine and used to spruce up instant ramen or udon! Not to mention stuffing sandwiches, and…) So, when Kenny Rogers Roasters put roast pork belly on its menu, how could I say no?
As shown above, for P 235.00, you get three slabs of roast pork belly, a scoop of garlic rice, a corn muffin, and your choice of any two side dishes. (In this case, I opted for a carbo-loading extravaganza: bacon potato salad and macaroni cheese. Steamed vegetables and the Asian twist [a spin on kung pao pasta but made with fusilli] or coleslaw and sour cream and chive potatoes are also neat choices.)
Considering that Kenny Rogers is all about fast-casual dining, the sort just one step removed from a standard fast food joint, the roast pork is a surprisingly good choice and delivers great value for money. The pork belly has been properly seasoned with the bare basics (salt and pepper) and roasted until the meat is tender, the fat melting, and the crackling – oh, my giddy aunt, the crackling! – is golden, perfectly crunchy, and moreish. The garlic rice adds a pungent note that enhances the natural sweetness of the pork. Of the sides, I preferred the salad because the new [chat] potatoes were cooked to the right texture and the creamy dressing was made smoky and savory by the addition of bacon and spring onions. The macaroni cheese, alas, tasted like it came from one of those Yank-style mixes in a box.
Honestly, it was the perfect meal for a Saturday afternoon solo jaunt. It was one made better by the addition of…
…my finally being able to snag a copy of Nigel Slater’s Toast. That plus an enormous Coke Zero made for the perfect Saturday afternoon.