When I was young, I lived in the Philippines for a bit. I fell in love with the food while I was there, and I have continued to make a few of the dishes ever since. My absolute favorite food at that age was chicken adobo. I don’t think I really have a favorite food anymore, but this is certainly one of the dishes I love the most.
This is an especially great recipe because it is fairly cheap to make, and the portions can be modified easily to make a small or large amount of food.
2 Tbsp canola oil, separated
1 large onion, sliced
8 cloves garlic, sliced
4 bay leaves
1/2 tsp black peppercorns, whole
6 pieces chicken, such as bone-in thighs or drumsticks (with skin)
1 C white vinegar
1 C soy sauce (wheat-free tamari will work, as always, I used La Choy soy sauce, as it does not contain wheat but has more of a soy sauce flavor)
The pictures I used for this post are from a larger batch than the recipe described that I made for a potluck. Imagine smaller amounts.
1. Heat 1 Tbsp canola oil over medium heat. Add sliced onion, stir until it begins to soften, then add garlic, continuing to stir occasionally.
2. (Optional step, that improves the texture a bit, in my opinion) While the onions and garlic are sautéing, heat other tablespoon of canola oil in a flat pan, browning each side slightly.
3. Add bay leaves and peppercorns to onion and garlic mixture. Stir to combine. Add chicken to onion mixture, then add soy sauce and vinegar. Simmer over medium-low heat until chicken is cooked through.
Serve over rice, with chili paste on the side.
To make this dish soy-free as well, you can use coconut aminos. I have a Filipina friend who loves her dad’s chicken adobo that he makes with it!
You can usually find bay leaves that are much cheaper and much more fragrant than those found in the spice aisle in the Hispanic section of your local grocery store.
The longer you can cook this, the better.
Don’t eat the bay leaves.