Bung is the rectum and large intestine of the pig - although an odd idea, it is considered something of a delicacy.
Growing up in the South I learned all about pork bung and how to cook it. I am now here to share my expertise with you.
In this post, I reveal what this meat is and how to prepare. Let's get started!
Yes, the rumors are true - pork bung is made up of the pig's large intestine which also includes the pig rectum.
Now, before you get too squeamish about this, I would like to inform you that hog rectum and large intestine is a common ingredients in dry sausage, smoked sausage, and liverwurst.
You may have not known that you were eating bung but it is almost certainly something that you have done before.
As I mentioned above, pig rectum has been used in a wide variety of foods. Due to this, it is possible to eat bung.
Now, some people believe that it is used as imitation calamari as it has a similar texture when deep fried. Despite this, there isn't any proof that this substitution is happening. As such, you can rest easy the next time that you order fried calamari at a restaurant.
And, in case you are worried, the pig rectum and intestine are processed carefully. These sections are washed and cleaned thoroughly.
Then, the mucous membranes are removed so that there is no slimy texture. It is then salted and graded before being sold.
Yes, when fresh this part of the pig can have a pungent urine smell. However, once it is all cleaned up and sent to the meat market it is indistinguishable from any other part of the pig.
Here is the million dollar question - what do these organs taste like?
Well, there is no getting over the fact that you are eating organs and not regular meat. Even deep fried bung is going to retain that offal taste. Some people may describe it as being a little gamey.
This is why it is usually served with a side of dipping sauce.
What's most interesting, though, is how pleasant the texture is. It is soft, fatty, and tender.
This is provided that you cook it properly, though. If you undercook the meat then it can have a slightly chewy texture.
Still, it is not even close to being unpleasant.
Yes, pork bung and chitterlings are the same thing. Chitterlings are typically found down in the South.
Well, this does depend on where you live. In case you are close to Southern states, you may find it under the name chitterlings.
Otherwise, check out your local Asian market. You are most likely to find it here.
If you are still not having any luck, then you can speak to a local butcher or farmer. They can act as a direct source.
You should be warned that you may need to process the bung by yourself in this case.
Before you cook bung, you should wash it in cold water several times.
Then, dilute vinegar in a quart of water. Soak the bung in this for about an hour.
Bring a large pot of water to boil. When the bung is ready, add to the water and cook for 10 minutes. Take off the heat and drain the water away.
Return the bung to the pot and cover with stock or water. Add veggies and salt well. Then, cook for up to 2 hours until the bung is tender.
Take off the heat but don't drain just yet. Wait until the pot and ingredients are cool enough to handle. Then you can remove from the pot and drain.
You can cook in some broth along with soy sauce. Or, add to a stir fry and cook until browned on each side.
Alternatively, deep frying the bung is a great option too. Just remember that this method of cooking can leave behind an unpleasant and lingering odor so you should be prepared.
I would suggest cooking in an airy space where all the windows are open. Even then, don't be surprised if the smell sticks around.
Start by slicing the bung. Then, pour enough oil into a deep pan. Heat well - when you insert a chopstick, the oil should be bubbling around the stick.
Then, add the bung and cook until golden brown.
As mentioned, you will need a dipping sauce to make this dish a little bit more palatable. A sweet chili sauce is always a good option.
You should absolutely give bung a shot - after all, you have probably eaten it in some other form at a different time.
If I could offer up a piece of advice, though, I would suggest trying out this dish in a restaurant first. You can find it in Asian restaurants as well as in Southern eateries.
If you find that you like it, go ahead and try making it at home.
In any case, you should give it a try. You never know - you could end up loving it!
So now you know what bung is, where to get it from, and even how to prepare it. All that is left for you to do is to muster up your courage and give it a try!