Flavour of the moment: Bay leaves, a flavour that adds depth and another layer to many a dish across many cuisines. Today that cuisine is from the Philippines. This dish is a favourite of mine from my childhood.
Cook book of the week: is still ‘Homemade with love – Jennifer Perillo’ I finished reading through it yesterday and there is scarcely a recipe I don’t want to make as soon as possible. For those who love cooking from scratch it really is a bible. On my day off on Monday I will be hitting the cookware shops with a vengeance in search of cheese cloths and a pizza peel. I’ve been making my own pizzas for several years but this book offers so many tips, I can’t wait to try them out.
Growing up in the Middle East made for a multicultural extravaganza of people, cuisines and festivals. Every culture was celebrated and there was room for everyone and as such there was always a plethora of international foods to choose from, whether it be at the mall, the cheap restaurant down the road or a much classier affair. For me though one of my favourite dishes was from a dear friend and colleague of my dad’s, Lourdes, who made hands down the best chicken adobo I have ever eaten. I have very fond memories of dad’s work parties and sleepovers with Lourdes when she babysat and there was always chicken adobo involved.
I have used many different recipes to try and recreate this dish and whilst craving it the other day decided that maybe a slow cooker was the way to go, to really develop those rich flavours further. Luckily Pinterest provided me with a recipe which I adapted very slightly below:
Ingredients: (Serves 3, but only because I only had 6 chicken thighs, add two more and it will serve 4, no need to adjust the other quantities but omit the potatoes, I put them in to soak up the extra sauce, yum!)
- 1 large shallot, finely chopped
- 2 medium-large baking potatoes, skin on, chopped into chunks
- 1 tsp of olive oil
- 6 gloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 3 tbsp of brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/4 ground cayenne pepper
- 2 bay leaves (I added an extra one for luck)
- 1/2 cup of chicken stock
- 1/3 cup dark soy sauce
- 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
- 6 chicken thighs (skin off as you don’t want too much fat in a slow cooker, I left the bones inside the thighs as these will most definitely add flavour, I will save them to make a chicken stock in the future)
- Florets from half a large head of broccoli
- 2 carrots, chopped as you desire
- Rub the olive oil around the inside of the slow cooker pot.
- Add the shallots, garlic, black pepper, cayenne, bay leaves and brown sugar to the pot.
- Add the chicken, vegetables and potatoes to the pot and pour the stock, vinegar and soy sauce over the chicken into the pot.
- Cook for 6 hours on a low heat.
I’ll admit that this is my first slow cooking experience and I loved how the meat and potatoes came out, I put the broccoli on the top of the rest of the food and this worked well to ensure the broccoli wasn’t over done. I’m not a huge fan of black pepper so may omit this in the future but it was a tasty dish. Nothing will ever be as good as Lourdes’ adobo but this definitely satisfied my adobo craving.