Monday, May 06, 2013

The Easiest Filipino Dish Ever: Chicken Adobo

Staple dishes like Adobo are a must in my cookbook.  Staple dishes inspire variations and allow me to diversify my meals so I don't have to hear "not the same dish again!"

Filipino adobo is one such dish: a classic Filipino dish that's easy to make and it's delicious.  

And yes, my husband and my toddler son love it.

If you have Filipino friends, then they should have made you this dish by now (not to put them on the spot or anything).  And if you haven't had it yet, take heart, you can try it now.   It's one of the first dishes I learned.  And with practice, it's one of the easiest dishes you can make. 

The following recipe was inspired by a book a friend of mine gave me right after college graduation (Gerry G. Gelle's dish in Filipino Cuisine: Recipes from the Islands).  Sometimes a cookbook will sit on a shelf until the day you desperately need to learn to cook.   I've therefore carried this book with me throughout my 20's and into my 30's.   Now that I use it often, even my own mom opens it from time to time to refresh her own knowledge of filipino cooking. 

The final result is a staple adobo dish that can be built upon (I will post these variations later). This recipe has been tweaked to adjust for my family's tastebuds.   Enjoy!

Chicken Adobo
(Adobong Manok)

Signature ingredients:

  • 2-3 lbs Chicken  (cut up or use drumsticks)
  • 1/4 cup Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar or apple vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced  (or add more if you love garlic like we do)
Other Ingredients:
  • Cooking oil  
  • 1/2 cup water (add more if you need to)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • pinch of salt

Heat the oil in a large pot and saut√© the garlic.  Add the chicken pieces and lightly brown.  Add the soy sauce, vinegar, salt, pepper and water and bay leaves and simmer, covered for 30 minutes.  The dish is done when the chicken is tender. 

Remove the cover and continue to simmer until the liquid is reduced by half.  Serve with white rice.  Makes 6-8 servings.

Post script:

  • Like it a little crisp?  Lightly pan fry the chicken after it's done and add it back to the sauce.   
  • Sauce not thick enough? You can thicken the sauce by making a slurry of 1 TBSPN water and 1 TBSPN cornstarch and stirring it into to the sauce) 
  • Leftovers? No problem. The Adobo's flavor gets better!

Come know you want to give it a try.  It's a simple recipe.  Tried and tested. Add Adobo chicken in your menu plan this month!

1 comment:

  1. all time Filipino signature dish... adobo. and you can adobo almost anything :)