There’s a reason why Adobo is the inauguration dish of our Tipsy Recipes section.
We, Anuca, Blessia and I, have known each other for years but it’s not until the end of 2016 that we began to talk intensely to each other, almost on a daily basis. We talked about our families, our values, our cultural specialties, the joy and struggles that we face. One of the many topics that seems to repeat itself is food, because we’re passionate about cooking, or to be more precise, we’re passionate about eating, be it our national dishes or foreign ones. I can’t count how many times my stomach rebelled loudly when I saw the food pics that were sent to me by Blessia and Anuca. One thing leads to another, on a February day after many sessions of looking at torturing delicious food pics, we asked each other to share our own favorite national dishes and we will try to recreate those dishes. That moment has become the first milestone of our Nomades Gourmandes journey.
For the first ever recipe of the Tipsy Recipes, we’d like to present to you a national dish that is finger-licking good but so very easy to make: Adobo chicken. Adobo is a famous Filipino dish. It has quickly become my favorite Southeast Asian non-Vietnamese dish and it may become yours too. So…Action!
Chicken thighs (600 gr)
Garlic (5 cloves)
Bay leaves (3)
Soy sauce (3 tablespoons)
Fish sauce (2 tablespoons)
Apple Cider Vinegar (2 tablespoons)
Sugar (2 tablespoons)
Chili (1, optional)
Step 1: Marinate the chicken thighs
In a bowl combine fish sauce, soy sauce, vinegar and sugar and mix them well.
Pour the marinade over your luscious chicken thighs then let your lovelies marinate for 2 hours or better yet, over night.
Step 2: Cook the chicken
5 minutes before cooking, peel, crush and mince your garlic cloves. I have a habit of crushing garlic with the side of the knife on the cutting board. When you crush it, your garlic will be more flavorful and it’s easier to mince.
Now heat your pan and add in vegetable oil.
When the oil is heated, put in your marinated chicken thighs and sear them. This step will make your chicken thighs more firm while giving them a nice beautiful brown sear color. (Only put in the chicken thighs, keep the marinade for the next step)
After 3 minutes or until the thighs are seared evenly, add in the marinade, the garlic that you minced so dutifully, bay leaves, chili (whole, without cutting), a dash of water and give a good stir. Close the lid over your pan and reduce the heat to a simmer. When you cook with closing lid, this step will seal enough steam in the pan and help to cook your chicken evenly while keeping it moist.
After 25 minutes, open your lid and give your thighs, chicken thighs of course, a stir. Let it simmer for 10 more minutes or until the liquid is reduced to a beautiful condensed caramel-colored sauce.
Your Adobo chicken is done, serve with rice and crunchy fresh herbs.
History of Adobo - written by Blessia Margarita Halatae
Adobo is the national dish of the Philippines. To be more precise: Adobo is a cooking method. Meat or Fish or vegetables are cooked in soy sauce and vinegar and garlic that results in an awesome flavor: Adobo. Little is known about the history of Adobo. It was first mentioned by the Spanish colonialists, who wrote about meat cooked in soy sauce and vinegar in letters and diaries. Since the Spanish ruled the Philippines from 1565-1898, we can be sure that the origins of Adobo is many centuries old.
It is widely accepted that Adobo has been created to preserve meat, fish and even vegetables – a cooking method that has become of crucial importance facing tropical climate and the absence of fridges. Even today Filipino families on the countryside cook Adobo in large pots, would cover them with banana leaves and leave them in the shadow to save time at preparing meals the other day (and because Adobo is highly popular, no cook can get away with an average portion). Also, in times when clear water would have become a rarity, the vinegar, the soy sauce and the many garlic cloves can ensure that bacteria are killed or at least the growth of bacteria would be inhibited. Another big plus is that the ingredients are few and the preparation effortless. Even beginners are able to cook a delicious portion of Adobo with ease. So Adobo has become one of the most known and loved national dishes of the Philippines.
Because Adobo is a cooking method, there are hundreds of versions of Adobo. Apart from the Adobo chicken that we present to you today, we are experimenting with different Adobo recipes and will bring to you its many variations (we can’t wait to show you Adobo pork belly among many others). Happy creating your Adobo!
Cover photo: Thao Uyen
A melting pot experience, in more than one way. Welcome to our Epicurean adventure!