Pork Adobo

Adobo had truly evolved through the years from being the unofficial national food of the Philippines. With millions of Filipinos all over the world, it's now being prepared by hundred and one ways. This is a classic dish that has gone through being a quintessential or local to being glo-cal. Ask a typical filipino housewife who cooks this dish of a standard recipe and really there's none to share. Simply because every household had developed its own version to follow.
For all Filipinos living in a foreign a land, I'm sure cooking this dish every once in a while will somehow connects us all back to our roots. In essence, it can be deemed any Filipino's comfort, nostalgic food. And since the ingredients of the dish are no difficult to procure it can be prepared anywhere else.

The most popular choice of meat for Adobo is pork belly. It has the tasty duo of meat and fat that provides a pleasing mouthfeel, texture and flavor to the dish. In terms of preparation and cooking method, there are different ways to consider. One, is the all-in stewing where the meat is no longer marinated nor fried. Just add all ingredients in a pot and boil the meat to tenderness. The other involves marinating the meat for at least 30 minutes then boiling. The last, includes frying after the meat has been boiled to softness. This is what I consider the most "sinful" version of the dish. It's rich, fatty mouthfeel to high heavens. But the browning of the meat and the caramelized, fried note add an exciting kick to the overall taste of this version of adobo. At home, I usually opt for the second type. I normally just marinate and boil. I skip the frying part unless I'm really craving for a rich and very tasty adobo.

What you need:
1 1/2 kg pork belly (cut in serving portions), 1 cup dark soy sauce, 1 cup cane vinegar, 1 whole bulb garlic (crushed, unpeeled), 1 tsp whole black pepper corns, 5 - 8 cups water, 3 bay leaves (crushed in smaller pieces)
How to make:
Marinate pork belly with all ingredients (except water) in a bowl for 30 minutes or more (overnight for best results). Transfer to a pot and add water. Allow to boil and cook until pork becomes tender. Do not stir nor cover the pot to allow the vinegar to cook well. Adjust the amount of water when necessary until the pork is cooked to its desired doneness.


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