Chicken Adobo – Filipino

In Filipino cuisine, Adobo is a borrowed Spanish word referring to a common and very popular cooking process indigenous to the Philippines. When Spanish colonizers first took administration over the Philippines in the late 1500s and early 1600s, they encountered an indigenous cooking process which involved stewing with vinegar, which they then referred to as “adobo”, which is the Spanish word for seasoning or marinade. Dishes prepared in this manner eventually came to be known by this name, with the original term for the dish now lost to history.

The standard accompaniment to adobo is white rice.

  • 1 lbs. pork cut in cubes + 1 lbs. chicken, cut into pieces or choice of either 2 lbs. of pork or 2 lbs. of chicken (thighs are great)
  • 1 head garlic, minced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2/3 cup vinegar
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 5 laurel leaves (bay leaves)
  • 4 tablespoons of cooking oil or olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • In a big sauce pan or wok, heat 2 tablespoons of oil then saute the minced garlic and onions.
  • Add the pork and chicken to the pan. Add 2 cups of water, 1/2 cup of soy sauce, vinegar, paprika and the bay leaves. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes or when meat is tender.
  • Remove the pork and chicken from the sauce pan and on another pan, heat cooking oil and brown the pork and chicken for a few minutes.
  • Mix the browned pork and chicken back to the sauce and add cornstarch dissolved in water to thicken.
  • Add salt and/or pepper if desired
  • Bring to a boil then simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
  • Serve hot with the adobo gravy and plain rice.

I sear the chicken in the olive oil and remove it from the pan before sauteing the garlic and onions. This gives the chicken a little extra flavor. I also let it simmer for several hours to incorporate the taste, but you could marinade the raw chicken in the sauce overnight (as is the traditional Filipino method).

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