Besides pork adobo, which is regular main at our home lunches and dinners, we sometimes also swing into the chicken-pork adobo combo. The basics are the same besides the addition of the chicken pieces. Adobo is simply a great dish because these two meat varieties are staples in our fridge, along with the soy sauce, vinegar and garlic in our pantry. And because mum's the only one who cooks (well, mum does get a break every now and then, on special occasions and you guys help when you
can want to), simple dishes are the best ones to keep in our small repertoire of mains.
And as with most Filipino dishes, the variety of methods in making adobo is endless (it comes with the geographical set up of the island and the different regions and provinces). This is mum's version. Perfected in our own little way.
To make chicken-pork adobo, you'll need:
750g chicken pieces
500g pork belly, chopped
5-6 cloves garlic, pounded (use a mortar and pestle or pound it with the flat side of a knife), for braising
5-6 cloves garlic, roughly chopped, for frying
equal parts of light soy sauce, white vinegar, water
3 medium sized potatoes, quartered
dry bay leaf
Put the pork first into a large pot with all the ingredients. Use cold water (as when making stocks, a cold water start helps to separate the impurities from the meat). Make sure that the liquid is enough to cover the meat. Bring this to a boil then add the chicken pieces. Bring to a boil then turn down heat to simmer until the meat is tender - could take 45 minutes or more.
Important to skim for fat and impurities every now and then.
Once meat is braised, turn off heat and set the pot aside. You will need some of that braising liquid.
Bring a skillet or large pan to medium heat. Add oil and cook the potatoes until slightly done. Place on a plate and set aside.
Cook the roughly chopped garlic in the same pan. Do not burn. Then add the braised meat pieces, sear and brown. You would want to have that seared/brown texture on the meat for a bit of colour and flavour. Searing for about 5 minutes.
Add some of the braising liquid, bay leaves and peppercorns if using and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the potatoes and simmer for another 10 minutes or until cooked through.
Serve with rice and lots of love.
When you're cooking adobo, it's important to taste and check for flavour every now and then. You may add a bit more soy sauce or vinegar to suit your taste preference, or add crushed peppercorns. Adobo is cooked without using any more salt as the soy sauce already contains the seasoning that you need. You can also use a darker variety of soy sauce, but then you have to take care as the darker the soy, the saltier it is. Mum finds that when using white wine vinegar for adobo, the taste becomes remarkably different compared to using the regular white vinegar. So there's a tip there.