Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Maycar Foods' Crackling - The Ultimate Pork Rind

I have a bag of these that remain half eaten in my cupboard. It's not that I don't want to finish them; it's that I am afraid that I will. This would be the third one I've consumed, and no other foodstuff I've eaten in recent memory has given me more pleasure and levied more guilt than this item. They are literally dangerous--everything that someone with an elevated cholesterol level should not eat.

But oh are they great. They are, in my opinion, the very best pork rinds on the planet. Actually, I'm not sure they can technically still be called pork rinds. The label simply says "cracklings" with the comically matter-of-fact addendum of "fried out pork fat with attached skin" as a descriptor. Actually, I suspect that the product is actually made from fatback.

They are certainly not the garden variety type of pork skin treat. It's noisier by a few decibels, a loud crunch on the lower frequency like Barry White's deep-throated rumble.

There are two separate and distinguishable strata of porcine material at play here: the outer curl, which is puffed-up and light-as-foam, and then the attached inner curl, which is dense and vaguely meaty. When my bite penetrates the latter, a surge of what feels like melted fat gushes out. I know it's not melted fat because the pieces are bone dry and are at room temperature, but it's a thrilling, if somewhat disturbing sensation, all the same.

I've only found them sold at one place, at the counter at Magic Wok in Artesia next to the other chips. I brought a bag to the office once and a co-worker and I finished it in fifteen minutes while we discussed its inherently salty, sweet, magical, and mystical qualities. As he ate, he examined every piece like a curious scientist and concluded that by the end of the bag, we probably just consumed the equivalent of a pack of bacon between the two of us.

No, I never compared the bag's nutritional facts with an actual pack of bacon to see if he was right. I don't want to know.

The Magic Wok
(562) 865-7340
11869 Artesia Blvd
Artesia, CA 90701

What We Learned in 2011


At 11:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So yummy.


At 12:26 PM, Blogger Kristine said...

Have you tried it with spicy vinegar? It makes it even more awesome.

At 12:07 PM, Anonymous JB said...

Magic Wok...
source of everything heavenly

At 12:11 PM, Blogger elmomonster said...


crack...crunch..crack...(sip of something liquid and cold)...burp...(repeat).


I actually find the spicy vinegar packet inside kind of distracting! But that's just me. However, I've yet to make my own out of Datu Puti and some chilies! That would work much better! I've considered using Mag Tomas Lechon sauce for these...because they're really close to lechon kawale!


So true. So true.

At 1:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's crazy...I was just thinking to myself today that the best meat product or meat part is the "cracklings." now I cam buy some!

At 8:57 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...


If you find these babies anywhere else but Magic Wok, be sure to let me know! I probably shouldn't have convenient access to them, but it'd be nice not to drive all the way out to Artesia.

At 3:35 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Happy New Year, Edwin.

This reminds me of my MW visit a few months ago on an empty stomach. I knew food would take a while so I had some of these for appetizers to complete my pork goodness "trifecta" (to borrow your word) -- chicharons, crispy pata and sisig. You must carry a pocket size defibrillator.

I don't have these on my to buy list but I believe I've seen them at Sea Palace (now UniMart), Seafood City, Island Pacific, American Ranch, Tambuli and some turo-turos. I'll keep an eye out for them when I go to those places and will let you know.

I was thinking about you yesterday 'cause I went to Holland America and picked up some goodies and a jar of Hot Sambal Cobek Terasi. I might just add some to Poke if my California Fish Grill has it here. Hmmmm, maybe get some Maycar cracklings? Mang Tomas just doesn't sound appetizing with pork fat goodness.

Take care, Edwin...

At 6:05 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

I messed up somehow, Edwin. Dunno why it posted as "Unknown".

At 11:31 AM, Blogger elmomonster said...

Happy new year (real name removed for privacy)!

I knew it was you! Who else would know the ins and outs of MW, reads SAFII, *AND* goes to Holland America for Indo supplies?

Good tip on the markets! I figured you'd know and that it'd be everywhere! I guess it goes to show that I'm at Magic Wok more than I am at a supermarket.

At 2:07 PM, Anonymous JB said...

^^^It could have been me, except for the going to Holland America part

At 5:38 PM, Blogger elmomonster said...

Hence the *AND*! You are two out of three!

At 9:34 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

*AND* goes to Chow King, Valero's, Red Ribbon, Toko Rame, Porto's and Kim Loan, all affordable meals (I pretend to be a college student on a tight budget). Oh how I wish I can add *AND* Marche Moderne, Park Avenue, Pascal, Lucques, etc., but for now the bucket list will have to do *AND* sallivate through these posts.

I sent you an e-mail -- found the snap, cracklings, pop at Uni-Mart
($2.99 for a 6 oz. bag). Dip in banana catchup ... "because they're really close to lechon kawale". Where's the defibrillator?

At 10:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you got time pass by city of industry, check at walmart (next to 60 hwy). I just bought a jar from there last week around 10.5 oz

At 7:15 PM, Anonymous Ron said...

I love these pork grinds! I would ignore the nutrition facts and just eat trying to also ignore the guilt. Well, I really don't feel guilty more like loving each and every ounce of fat. Magic Wok, love that place!

At 4:17 PM, Blogger Edlyn34 said...

OMG! I love Chicharrones! Or at least that's what we call them in Mexico, and living in Irvine its hard to find some! I would go all the way to Artesia if I could but I'll settle for the ones i can find in Santa Ana

- Try them with lime and chili powder!


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