Philippines' Adobo is featured in NY Times Magazine


“There are as many recipes for adobo as there are Philippine islands.” says Sam Sifton about his article The Cheat: The Adobo Experiment in New York Times Magazine website. He added in more than 7,100 islands in the Philippines, a nation slightly larger than the state of Arizona, you will find different recipes of adobo if you travel it all. This is because the Filipino cooking is a cuisine that includes Chinese, Spanish, American and indigenous island influences, all rolled into one making it an evolutionary masterpiece.

Filipinos Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan, authors of “Memories of Philippine Kitchens”, the first major Filipino cookbook published in 2006 internationally and owner of Purple Yum restaurant based in Brooklyn, New York share their chicken adobo version with a sauce that combines vinegar and coconut milk with soy sauce, garlic and fiery little Thai chilies. Amy clears that “No two people in the same house will cook adobo the same way.” At Purple Yam, her husband finishes the process by tossing the chicken into a deep-fryer, to crisp and to caramelize it at once. Then best served with white rice and some steamed or sautéed greens.

Their cookbook “Memories of Philippine Kitchens” is the winner of the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) 2007 Jane Grigson Award for scholarship in the quality of its research and writing.  It is also a finalist for the Julia Child First Book Award. Amy shares in an email reply she sent to the author that a big part of that book was conceptualized from their hometown, Irosin where they gathered people mostly relatives of Romy and asking them to list and talk about their childhood food, particularly the family recipes and traditional cooking methods used. They spent years tracing in and outside influences on the food of thePhilippines all throughout like in Pampanga, Negros, Ilocos etc. too.

Sam continues that there is always an “argument” to husbands and wives in the Philippines as to how adobo is cooked at least for a day like disputes over what vinegar to use, sugar, whether to include a garlic or not and how much of it. Some use chicken, others pork, or a combination.  He ends his article by saying “This isadobo. Every man [is] an island”
Image and information source: The Cheat: The Adobo Experiment , New York Times

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