Count on the traditional cultures around the world to have perfected stews that provided a full stomach at a low cost. In the Philippines, a country with a cultural marriage between Asian and Spanish influences, there are stews called Adobo which perfectly represent this need. Chicken and pork are the main food ingredients, along with rice and vinegar, and dipping into the Spanish spice cache, and considering the warm climate, the Adobo is one wonderful traditional dish. It is a long and slow cooked stew with as many variations as there are cooks on the Islands. Ask a dozen cooks, you get a dozen recipes. Here’s our version which manages to be totally satisfying without breaking the carbohydrate sound barrier.
Adobo is a seasoned salt that is generously sprinkled or rubbed on meats and seafood prior to grilling, sauteing, or frying. Supermarkets sell prepared blends like Goya. There are two types of adobo on the island. One is a wet rub called adobo mojado. It consists of crushed garlic, olive oil, salt, black pepper, dry or fresh orégano brujo, citrus juice and/or vinegar or a mix of both citrus with vinegar.
How much rice you can eat with the adobo depends on where you are on your path to weight loss. Until you are within 10 pounds of your goal weight, eat the adobo in a bowl without rice. Then use 1/2 cup cooked brown rice per 1 cup serving of stew.
Chicken and Pork Adobo in a Coconut Broth
makes 6 servings
1-1/2 pounds organic chicken thighs with skin and bones
2 pork organic shoulder chops with bones
salt and black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon sweet/smoky Spanish paprika
1 tablespoon olive oil
6 cloves garlic, smashed
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1 14.5 ounce can coconut milk
1/2 cup apple cider
1 cup water
2 bay leaves
1 lime quartered
4 sprigs thyme
4 cups cooked brown rice
Season meats to taste with salt, pepper, and paprika. Cook until browned on all sides in hot olive oil in a stew pot. Add onions and garlic and cook down until onions become translucent. Add liquids all at once: vinegar, coconut milk, apple cider, and water. Add bay leaves. Bring to a boil, then turn down and cook for about an hour, or until meat is falling off the bone.
Remove meat from the stew and cut into bite-sized chunks then return it to the pot. Discard bones. Replace meat into stew. To serve, put a serving of rice in the bottom of the soup bowl, then top with a serving of stew. Finish with a sprinkling of thyme and lime juice. Enjoy. This tastes even better the second day.