Tuesday, October 24, 2006


I used to be married to a Philippina and consequently have a great love of their cuisine. Their food is a lovely blend of Asian and European, specifically Spanish which creates many interesting combinations. Adobo is simplicity itself based upon a Spanish stew and Asian curry and can be made using very cheep ingredients.

Take chicken pieces and pork and brown in oil in a heavy bottomed pan. The pan should be a braising pan that can be closed for food to simmer. The pork needs to be somewhat fatty and belly pork is ideal although one can use any cut. You should allow about 250 – 300 grams of meat per person.

When the meat is browned add loads of garlic (this really is to taste but whatever looks like a lot to you is probably about correct), rice or white vine vinegar, thick soya sauce, salt and 1 tbs of whole peppercorns, 4 or so bay leaves. The proportion should be 3:1 vinegar to soya. Bring to fast boil then lower heat to a simmer and cover. Let cook for about 30-40 minutes, until meat is soft.

When you think the meat is ready, taste the sauce and meat to see what's missing. I add about a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar to sweeten the sauce. Use sugar or honey if none is available.

Take the meat out of the sauce and put it in an oven tray and brown on all sites in a medium heat oven. When brown put in a clean serving plate and poor over the sauce. Serve with white rice.

PS: I love adding a plantain banana to the sauce shortly before it is ready. My ex thought this was sacrilege but I think it’s a great addition. Just make sure you don’t leave the plantains in there too long as they will disintegrate.

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