The October issue of Time Out Sydney is now out with my latest Food & Drink column highlighting Sizzling Fillo in Lidcombe.
As vocal fans of Anthony Bourdain's show No Reservations pointed out, Filipino cuisine seems to often be overlooked and under-appreciated on the international dining scene. There are not many Filipino restaurants in Sydney, but they do exist and are worth visiting, especially if the idea of a pork hock deep-fried to a crackling crisp gives you the same goosebumps as it does for me.
Sizzling Fillo, Lidcombe
WHAT IS SIZZLING FILLO?
One of the few Filipino restaurants in Sydney serving traditional dishes for homesick expats.
WHAT'S IT LIKE?
Silk chair covers, folded napkins and fresh orchids on every table give this suburban restaurant a bit of a wedding reception vibe. A karaoke unit in the corner gets an enthusiastic workout on Saturday nights, but most other times the restaurant is reasonably sedate.
Crispy pata $19.00
WHAT SHOULD I ORDER?
Crispy pata ($19) is a must for anyone with a taste for crackling. Pork hocks are boiled, air dried and then deep fried until the surrounding skin blisters into crackling. Traditionally served whole, here the hock is chopped into chunky pieces.
Crispy pata with accompanying vinegar soy dipping sauce
HOW SHOULD I EAT IT?
Use your fingers and take your time to savour the crisp, shattering skin before dunking the meat into the bowl of dressing (a mix of vinegar, soy and garlic) that will refresh any dry bits of meat and counter the richness. The bones are the best part, especially if you manage to tease out bits of tendon that are deliciously sticky.
Adobo chicken $13.50
Adobo chicken ($13.50), a national dish of the Philippines, is a simple dish of chicken legs slow cooked in soy sauce and vinegar with garlic, bay leaf and peppercorns.
Sizzling sisig $16.00
Spicy chopped pork dish with raw egg on top
Sizzling sisig is made from the pig's head, a mixture of diced pig's cheeks, ears and snout fried and serving on a sizzling plate with a raw egg on top. The yolk should be mixed in immediately so it coats the meat in a sticky sauce.
Garlic rice $9.00
Kare kare $17.00
Filipino stew of beef, oxtail and mixed vegetables in peanut sauce and coconut milk
served with shrimp paste to taste
Leche flan $9
A sweet and rich Filipino creme caramel
Ube macapuno purple yam ice cream $5.00
The creme caramel was a little disappointing on the day we visited, but ube ice cream will always one of my favourite flavours!
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Sizzling Fillo Restaurant and Karaoke Bar
36 Railway Street, Lidcombe, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9649 7939
Wednesday to Sunday 11am-10pm
Karaoke on Saturday nights 7pm-10pm
Time Out Sydney reviews:
ATL Marantha, Kensington (Indonesian fried chicken with edible bones)
Balkan Oven, Rockdale (Macedonian burek)
Durban Dish, Baulkham Hills (South African bunny chow)
Hijazi's Falafel, Arncliffe (Lebanese breakfast)
Island Dreams Cafe, Lakemba (Christmas Islands cuisine)
La Paula, Fairfield (Chilean empanadas, lomitos and sweets)
Sea Sweet, Parramatta (Lebanese sweet kashta cheese burger)
Tehran, Granville (Persian cuisine)
Tuong Lai, Cabramatta (Vietnamese sugar cane prawns)
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10/12/2010 03:47:00 am