Chicken Adobo is a Philippino dish, a most authentic one. Several sources say that the Philippinos were already cooking adobo even before Spanish colonisation. Not to be mistaken with Mexican adobo, this dish is uniquely prepared by stewing chicken in vinegar and soya sauce. This method is also considered as one of the earliest food preservation practice.
I first tasted Chicken Adobo on board a ship. My husband being in the shipping industry, used to sail regularly till few years back. Though my sailing experience with him is less, it is an excellent one. Inside a ship it is like that of universal harmony, people of various ethnicity working together at one place in perfect coordination. Far from home for months, it was a second home for all these hardworking guys. What average people say about them that they are all drunkards has very little truth in it. Fact is drinking on board has been banned for a pretty long time and they do miss their family madly. It is for their family that they accept such a hard life. People lack empathy and can say anything, words are not taxable.
In general, on board you have Philippino cooks. I tasted a couple of their cuisine. They can cook other cuisines also with much élan as they have to cater to the taste buds of 30-35 crew members of different ethnicity 3 times everyday. So I consider them nothing less than an expert. As usual, by breakfast time I used to be at the galley to assist the cooks at my own will, in spite of my naughty husband ordering the chief cook not to allow me there. Chief got very friendly with me and would request me to make roti which they were poor at. Well, I can proudly say I prepared 25-30 roti every night with their help. It was pleasure cooking for people far from home for months. I wish to write about this hard working, carefree bunch of people titled "LIFE AT SEA"....I have the right concoction of empathy, emotion and material, but I lack vocabulary or may be the flair for writing.
I found Chicken Adobo, the simplest of all recipes using very little ingredients.
CHICKEN : 500 gm
VINEGAR : 2tbsp
SOYA SAUCE : 4tbsp[preferably the dark one,I used the light one]
GARLIC[minced] : 2tbsp
BLACK PEPPERCORNS : 8-10
BAY LEAVES : 2-3
SALT : as required
SUGAR : 1/2 tbsp
OIL : 3tbsp
WATER : 2-3 cups
Wash the chicken and pat dry. Marinate with the minced garlic, vinegar, soya sauce, salt as required for about 2-3 hours.
Heat oil in a wok. Fry the chicken pieces for about 5-8 minutes. Add the marinade. Mix well and cook for 4-5 minutes.
Add the bay leaves and peppercorns. After five minutes, add water, mix well and and cover. Simmer at low heat for another 10 to 12 minutes, add the sugar, stir and switch off. Its done.
Enjoy hot with piping hot steamed rice!!