Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Some like it black

Adobo is one of my all-time favorite Filipino dishes. I guess you could say it's my comfort food. Through the years, I've been blessed with nannies who cooked adobo well - you know, the version where you have pork and/or chicken simmered in vinegar, soy sauce, garlic and other flavorings. I am saying this because there are many varieties of adobo in this tropical country where adobo is king. The sad truth is am not so proud of my classic adobo although I cook the other versions quite well, such as adobong manok sa gata (chicken in coconut milk) and adobong pusit (squid).

Squid adobo is quite an easy dish to make but the trick is how to make it delicious or just right to the taste. It could be that the squid meat is not tender or the taste of the vinegar is overpowering or the sauce is watery, meaning it was haphazardly done. Whatever, I like spooning my adobo sauce over a plate of hot rice and munching on the squid which is a pleasant diversion from the pork/chicken/beef cafeteria choices on weekdays. There is also a reason why I cook squid adobo at home. There is simply no way I'll eat it on a date and smile at my potential conquest with blackened teeth.

Last Monday being a national holiday, I had the time to go to the market and cook the adobo. For this budget-conscious mom, squid is quite expensive at P140 a kilo and it only gave me 10 medium-sized ones. This time around, I used cubes of pork as an extender and also because a little of the pork fat will give the dish a distinct flavor. Photo below shows how it looked like when I sauteed it with the garlic, onions and tomatoes in olive oil.

Originally uploaded by annalyn.

adobong pusit
Originally uploaded by annalyn.
When the meat was thoroughly mixed in and a little brown, I added the squid,a cuppa vinegar, a little water,salt or patis to taste (I found out Thai fish sauce tastes better)and a dash of sugar to neutralize the flavors.You let it simmer until the sauce evaporates and it is of desired consistency.Of course, don't forget to throw in a piece or two of local green pepper.Here was my adobo when it was done. It took a long time for this lazy cook to do it but it has been worth it..yum:)