The acronym is the same as the previous post for the Southern dish Kadyos, Baboy at Langka, but the Northern KBL stands for Kamatis, Bagoong at Lasona. This relish or condiment or side dish of sliced tomatoes, fish sauce and sliced onions appears often at an Ilocano meal, and it is eaten along with bagnet or other fried dishes, in the same way that other regions rely on vinegar or patis as a sawsawan or dip. In these photos I have a homemade KBL served with utterly delicious homemade bagnet as well. Personally, I like the pairing a lot, despite a personal preference for a more acidic or vinegary sawsawan or dipping sauce in general. But others who are unused to the fishy aftertaste of the fish sauce tend to steer away from this concoction.
The fish sauce used here is typically the murky, cloudy version, rather than the clear patis from Malabon. Perhaps I am more inclined to like this relish or dip because my dad used to eat a very similar mixture of tomatoes, guinamos and sili or chili. And when he really got into it, he was smushing the tomatoes and really making a salsa of sorts to go with inihaw na baboy or a whole grilled fish, and usually this meant he was eating kamayan style (using bare hands instead of utensils). Talk about pungent fingers after the meal!