Basic Chicken Adobo
(Please quibble with the recipe and make changes. I’m begging you.)
glass bowl or tupperware for marinating
sauce pan or casserole
baking pan/sheet for broiling (line with foil/Silpat to avoid scrubbing)
tongs/fork/chopsticks for moving hot food around
chopping stuff if you need to cut up meat
2 lbs chicken wings, legs & thighs
1C – 1.5C vinegar (rice or cane or ???)
¼ - ½ C soy sauce (or 1 - 1.5 Tbs salt)
3 bay leaves
1 Tbs whole peppercorns
12 garlic cloves
(1 or 2 crushed/torn dried peppers – med or hot)
( ½C – 1C coconut milk)
Prep: (super-duper easy)
If you are working with a whole chicken, or quarters, cut the bird at the joints. (Freeze the breasts for something else – or use them tonight if you are marinating for tomorrow.)
Hit the garlic cloves once with a pot, or that “tenderizing hammer” you got with a kitchen set at some point. Remove the papery skin.
Into the marinating vessel, add the vinegar, soy sauce, bay leaves, peppercorns, smacked and partially crushed garlic cloves (and any optional ingredients). Stir to combine.
Snuggle the chicken pieces into the liquid.
Cover, place in the fridge and marinate for an hour or up to overnight.
(You can peel some potatoes or yams to add in chunks when you start the cooking if you’d like.)
Cook! (if possible even easier)†
Pour all the ingredients into your saucepan/casserole (including optional tubers). Get the chicken down into the liquid. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes. At about 15 minutes, turn over or re-snuggle the chicken in the sauce.
(Another optional: In the last 5 min of cooking, add a hard boiled egg or two).
Remove all the big chunks.
Use your stirring spoon to smash up a few pieces of the softened garlic into the sauce. Turn up the heat to reduce the sauce to coat-the-back-of-a-spoon thickness. At the same time…
Place the chicken pieces under the broiler to crisp any skin (about 4 min for each side of wings and legs, and about 5 just on the skin side of the thighs.)
Return everything to the thickened sauce.
Serve over rice or with stir-fried and/or grilled veg (bok-choi or cabbage – always a good idea).
Refrigerate any leftovers for easy food the next day. Or freeze for much later. (This is the kind of thing that loves to be doubled – cook 1x, eat 2x)
† I've looked over a bunch of crockpot recipes. Can't vouch, but the consensus seems to be:
Use 2 or so onions sliced into rings to create a platform for the chicken.
No need to marinate - as Madge the Manicurist used to say, "You're soaking in it."
Use the same recipe, maybe add a little water to make sure everything is snuggled into the liquid.
Cook at Hi for 3-ish hours
Cook at Low for 6-ish hours
Skin on and bone in are essential for this version.
The broil-flip-broil is nice, but not essential.
Attention Paleo-Peeps! (And other people who are avoiding extra sugar)
No sugar is needed as long you have bones and skin to add richness to the sauce. The large amounts of sugar in many of these crock-pot recipes is needed to give body and as a thickener when gelatin and fat are absent.