Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Chicken Adobo

Chicken Adobo (Braised Chicken)
Chicken Adobo is viewed as the national dish of the Philippines. Adobo is both a specific dish and a method of braising meat, seafood or vegetables in soy sauce, vinegar, bay leaf, crushed garlic and peppercorns.

This dish was the first Filipino recipe I mastered because of its simplicity and short ingredient list! This basic recipe combination allows for many variations and I'm sharing my Mom's version of her chicken adobo. She includes brown sugar for added sweetness and finishes the chicken by browning it in a frying pan for desired crispness.

Did You Know: Adobo is a borrowed Spanish word meaning marinade or seasoning. In the 1500s, it was the Spaniards who introduced vinegar to Filipino cuisine as a way to preserve food due to the lack of refrigeration.
4 servings


3lbs of chicken thighs bones-in or cubed pork
3 tbsp of minced garlic
1 tbsp of kosher salt
1 tbsp of whole pepper corns
1/4 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups of soy sauce
1/4 cups of dark soy sauce
2 bay leaves
4 tbsp of vegetable oil
Delicious Tip: When cooking adobo style, use ceramic, glass, stainless steel or wrought iron sauce pans - anything but aluminum, which interacts chemically with vinegar and impairs the flavour.

1. In a 3-4 liter sauce pan, put the chicken, garlic, salt, peppercorns, sugar, vinegar, water, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and bay leafs. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring periodically. Remove any impurities that float up to the top of the stew.
2. Remove the chicken pieces from the pot, and allow any excess liquid to drain off them. The flesh of the chicken should be very tender and cooked.
3. Allow the stock to reduce by half.
4. Heat the oil in a wok or frying pan. Fry the chicken pieces until they are golden brown and crispy.
5. Transfer the chicken back into the adobo sauce and place onto a serving platter. Serve with steamed jasmine rice and cooked veggies, if desired.
Delicious Tip: The flavour of this dish improves when it sits for 1-2 days. Great for leftovers!


  1. My grandma used to make this when I was a kid.. and yes! I agree, the flavour gets better with age. :)