Amazing food doesn’t have to be complex, expensive, or far-fetched. Adobo is widely considered as the Philippines’ unofficial national dish because it’s easy to cook, easy on the budget, savoury, and satisfying. It’s a straightforward dish that simply tastes amazing.
There are many kinds of adobo – pork, squid, even kangkong – but chicken adobo is popular because the meat cooks faster and is more economical. The success behind this bestseller doesn’t boil down to just one key ingredient. From the preparation to cooking to ingredients, the entire process makes all the difference in producing this signature dish.
Check out this list of important details that’ll help you make your adobo recipe unforgettable.
Whether commercial, organic, or free-range, make sure each chicken cutlet is fresh and up to standards.
Every dish gets its flavour profile from the ingredients used. Learn how to balance and combine flavours to get your perfect mix. Adobo’s flavour profiles are simple but well-balanced:
- Sour – Vinegar balances spice and enhances sweet notes. Try to use natural vinegar instead of distilled white vinegar.
- Salty – Soy sauce, garlic, and chicken balance any bitterness and enhance sweet flavours.
- Sweet – Adding sugar or oyster sauce to your dish will boost sweetness to complement the soy sauce.
- Savoury – Bay leaves enhance overall dish flavour.
- Spice – Peppercorns balance sweet and sour flavours.
In order for the all the flavours to fully infuse into the chicken meat, chill the marinated meat in the fridge for at least one hour.
The cooking time of a basic chicken adobo meal for 4 people is about 45 minutes. First, cook the chicken on its own then simmer the meat with the marinade under low to medium heat. Avoid boiling the batch because this will make the meat soggy and look less palatable.
The classic chicken adobo recipe is neither dry nor swimming in sauce. Adding water prevents the meat from drying out. Once oil is expressed from the meat, the dish is cooked.
As the steam escapes the lid while the chicken simmers, the sharp scent of the vinegar, garlic, and soy sauce stirs the senses. If desired, add a few dried bay leaves to intensify the aroma.
Adobo is a well-balanced dish but go ahead and bend the rules a bit by putting your own spin on it by using ingredients such as crunchy garlic or star anise as spice. Try switching plain vinegar with pinakurat, apple cider vinegar, or balsamic vinegar.
Classic dishes with a twist are hot sellers, especially if the refined recipe pleases their palates. Your chicken adobo doesn’t have to be complicated. By adjusting the flavour and changing some ingredients, you can make this entrée truly exceptional.