Pork crackling

A delicious snack; people on a diet will struggle to resist this temptation.

Toresmo from “Guilly” Canavarro Remedios


1 lb | 450g pig fat (For this purpose use the thick white fat with very thin pieces of skin on both sides from the stomach of the pig, and not from the meaty part.)
1 tsp water

Cut fat in 1″ cubes, put in a pan with the water, bring to the boil and simmer over low heat stirring occasionally. After a while the lard will exude and the rendered fat float to the surface. When these have shriveled and look dry, drain the lard into a bowl, pressing every bit of lard out of the rendered fat till dry.

The rendered fat can be used for toresmo.


1 lb | 450g rendered fat
6 spring onions, chopped
½ tsp balichão

Put half a tsp lard in a pan and when hot add spring onions and fry for for ½ min, add balichão and fry for 2 mins, then add the rendered fat and stir fry for 2 mins.

Toresmo from Maria Leitão

2 lb | 900g pig’s skin
1 tbsp balichão
6 spring onions, cut in small pieces

It is important that the skin should be from the back of the pig and not near the stomach or leg. This skin is usually sold in pieces about 2 ft | 60cm long and 1 ft | 30cm wide, and has about 1″ of fat on it.
Wash the skin with the attached fat, then cut into small strips 1″ | 2.5cm long and ½” | 1/2cm wide. Heat on a very low flame to let all the fat melt out. This should take at least a couple of hours, after which the pieces of skin will be much shrunken, look rather brownish and be as hard as rubber, and not at all sticky inside. Some liquid lard may be drained off during the process.
When all the lard has been extracted from the fat and the pieces look dry, drain off all the lard. With chopsticks or fingers, separate any pieces that are attached together.
Heat fat in a saucepan and when quite hot, test by dropping in one piece of skin and stirring: if the skin puffs out nicely and is light and crispy, then put in as many pieces of skin that can be accommodated in the lard (with enough space for expansion). Stir constantly with a pair of chopsticks to have them evenly fried. A couple of minutes may be enough, or till golden brown.
Fry the rest the same way. Drain out on a sheet of paper.
Heat 2-3 tbsp lard in a large pan, and when hot, add spring onions and balichão. Fry for 2 minutes. Put in the fried skins, lower the heat, and stir well so that the taste of balichão can get into every piece of the skins. Put on a sheet of paper or plate to cool, then keep in a tin well closed. Delicious.

Scroll to Top