Chicken Adobo

It seems Rico has come to the Dark Side today. He is being a little bratty and would not stop wanting to spend the day out. Can’t say I blame him though; it’s been a pretty mild winter here in Central Oregon and we haven’t had much snow, even in La Pine – the Winter Capital of Central Oregon, according to an instagram friend, @blaubeard9. The upside of this week though, we’re expecting highs of 50 this week. Bring out the shorts and flipflops!

Anyway, I felt guilty posting about the delicious Chicken Adobo Sandwich and not sharing a recipe for Adobo. It took forever for me to make it the way I like it. My younger brother makes it so much better than I do but I finally found a recipe that I love (and may even beat his version). I even tried Giada De Laurentiis’ recipe and the Filipino in me felt so guilty, like I’m a traitor to my own culture; cooking adobo by an Italian-American. I think the recipe that I’ve come to love may or may not be by a non-Filipino also. On my next Philippine trip, I want to do a foodie learning tour, if there is one and learn to cook Filipino food better.

So on to the recipe then..

Chicken Adobo [tweaked from The Weiser Kitchen‘s post, modernized by Chef Victor Abud Hall]

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil
6 garlic cloves, smashed
3 pounds chicken thighs (and/or drumsticks), skin and bones.
2 cups water
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce (I used Filipino soy sauce)
3-4 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon peppercorns

allez-cuisine!

  1.  In your skillet or pot, over medium heat, sauté the garlic until ligh brown.
  2. Add the chicken to the skillet and brown on all sides about 15-20 minutes. If you need to do batches, transfer the browned chicken to a plate along with the garlic to keep it from burning. When done, return the chicken to the pot.
  3. Add the water, vinegar, soy sauce, bay leaves, and peppercorn to your chicken. Bring to boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered. Stir occasionally for about 30-40 minutes.
  4. When chicken temperature is at 160F, it is ready to eat.
  5.  Serve with white or brown rice. I love jasmine brown!
  6. EAT!

WIKI-EAT

Although it has a name taken from Spanish, the cooking method is indigenous in the Philippines. When the Spanish colonized the Philippines in the late 16th century and early 17th century, they encountered a cooking process which involved stewing with vinegar, which they then referred to as adobo, the Spanish word for seasoning or marinade. Dishes prepared in this manner eventually came to be known by this name, with the original term for the dish now lost to history.

There you have it, an adobo recipe tweaked by a Filipina from a non-Filipino source because her brother won’t teach her his recipe. Bon appétit!

Chicken Adobo Sandwich with Sriracha Mayo

I wish Rico and I weren’t having such a gloomy day. It’s been raining out in Central Oregon and well, I’m really not into cleaning muddy floors, I’d rather have a busy, messy kitchen, really. Fortunately, it wasn’t as bad this morning so we were able to do our morning walk. The ritual is, get up, walk Rico and then make Ben’s baon (lunchbox).

We have some leftover Chicken Adobo from a couple of days ago so after our walk, Rico and I went to one of the 2 grocery outlets in town. We live in a really small town with a population less than 2,000; such a contrast to the overpopulated Anaheim which we love and miss so much. Anyway, so at the market, while Rico waited patiently in the car, I set out to buy a couple of (Mexican) Bolillo rolls but alas, there weren’t any so I opted for French Dip Rolls. It’ll work, I thought, It has to. So I finished the trip to the market by grabbing a pack of swiss cheese and 2 cans of Arizona Green Tea, paid for my loot and headed home.

While Ben slept, I made the first sandwich and decided to have it for brunch. It’s even better than the adobo sandwich that I used to buy from Tribal Cafe in DTLA’s Historic Filipinotown. I do have to thank Janine of Hello Happy House for letting me know what’s in Tribal’s Adobo Sandwich.

Did You Know?  

Despite the fact that there are other enclaves of Filipinos living outside Downtown Los Angeles (such as Artesia, Cerritos, West Covina, and Eagle Rock), this distric was named “Historic Filipinotown” since it was one of the few areas where Filipinos first settled during the early part of the 20th century and home to key Filipino organizations, Filipino churches (Filipino Christian Church, Iglesia ni Kristo, St. Columban Filipino Catholic Church, United Church of God Ministries, Praise Christian Fellowship, and Congregational Christian Church), housing (Manila Terrace, Mindanao Towers, Mountain View Terrace, and Villa Ramos), and social service centers. Many Filipino American families began purchasing homes and establishing businesses in the area beginning from the 1940s, shifting away from the downtown area now known as Little Tokyo in the 1920s and the Bunker Hill area later. [historicfilipinotown.org]

So, if you have leftover Chicken Adobo and you haven’t got a hankering for rice, try shredding the chicken and making a sandwich for a change!


Chicken Adobo Sandwich with Sriracha Mayo

Ingredients:

Cooked (or leftover) Chicken Adobo, shredded
Bolillo Bread (or baguette)
Sriracha Mayo (Lazy version: 2 tbsp mayo, 2 tbsp sriracha, I added a couple drops of lemon juice, taste to test!)
Swiss Cheese

allez-cuisine!

  • Spread sriracha mayo on bottom halves of bread. I also spread some of the adobo sauce in.
  • Add in your shredded chicken adobo (amount depends on your liking and the size of your bread.)
  • Top it with Swiss cheese.
    • Tribal Cafe also topped their Adobo sandwich with Roasted Peppers as well.
  • Toast(er oven) and enjoy!

So there ya have it, my Tribal Cafe inspired Adobo Sandwich. Bon appétit

easy-peasy broccoli beef and locally raised food.


For those close to me, they know that besides from working up a sweat in the kitchen, I have a bit of an obsession with sustainability and the green movement. Before I share today’s recipe, let’s talk about the benefits of eating locally grown/produced food.  According to Sustainable Lafayette,  there are so many important benefits from eating locally grown food such as helping local farmers, to eating for better health (even when the products aren’t organic, small farms tend to be less aggressive than large factory farms about dousing their wares with chemicals) , and helping the fight against global warming.

Why am I babbling about locally grown food? Well, this morning I went to Newport Avenue Market in Bend (that’s in Oregon) for a job interview and decided to shop after. I bought local Oregon raised beef (hormone free, no antibiotics) and a pack of chopped broccoli (also from Oregon).  So yes, today, I did the world good by buying Oregonian produced food.

I had a better picture (and plating) but I decided to eat first and upload later so I lost the photo. Anyway, let’s get to cooking!

 

BROCCOLI BEEF 

Ingredients:

1 lb beef (cut into strips, beef chuck is good, I used cross rib  steak)
1 cup beef broth
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1 tbsp sesame oil
3 garlic cloves
2 tbsp cornstarch (mixed in about a cup of cold water)
Frozen broccoli florets (I used the whole bag, hehe)

allez-cuisine!

  1. In a bowl, combine beef broth, soy sauce, brown sugar and sesame oil. Stir and set aside.
  2. Heat sesame oil in frying pan and sauté the garlic.
  3. Brown the slices of beef about 2-3 minutes per side.
  4. Pour the concoction from step 1. Let it boil. Let it simmer.
  5. Check the beef for desired tenderness. When it’s near your desired tenderness, toss in your broccoli.
  6. Mix the cornstarch water in (I took the beef and broccoli off the pan) to thicken the sauce.
  7. Serve with rice. brown rice, white rice, no rice.
  8. EAT!

You can also crock pot it for 6 hours (everything in the crock pot except cornstarch and broccoli). When meat is done, you can whisk the cornstarch with the liquid (in the crockpot). Cook on low for 30 minutes to thicken up the sauce.

I felt it tasted better than the best beef broccoli I’ve had. Try it and let me know how yours turn out. Bonne chance et bon appétit!

New Year, New Recipe! Soft Pretzels!

Out with the old, in with the new! Ben bought me a 50-, yes – FIFTY, pound bag of bread flour I surprise myself actually. I never thought I’d be baking anything that didn’t come from a box by Duncan Hines. So after dozens and dozens of pan de sal, I thought why not move on to making other things.

I’ve made French Bread but wish I’ve taken better photos. They turned out okay for my first attempt and would definitely make them again. I do have a gazillion pounds more flour for baking.

I’ve also attempted to make pretzels. The photo below was my first attempt.  Personally, I like them plain and dipped in condensed milk (yes, it’s just as bad as it sounds.), Ben likes them salted. My pretzels were awesome! So awesome, I’ll share the recipe with you.

Bonjour, bretzels! (that’s french for pretzels)

Ingredients: (Serves 4)

1 1/2 cups water
1 1/4 tsps (1 package) active dry yeast
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
4 cups bread flour
2 cups water
2 tablespoons baking soda
coarse salt

(2-4 tablespoons melted butter, optional)

  1. Sprinkle yeast on 1 1.2 cups warm water and stir to dissolve.
  2. Add the sugar, salt. Stir to dissolve.
  3. Add flour, more if it’s too wet, knead dough until smooth and elastic.
  4. Place the dough in an lightly oiled bowl, cover in plastic wrap, and let rise for about an hour or until it has doubled in size.
  5. While the dough is rising, combine 2 cups of warm water with baking soda to prepare a water bath. Stir often.
  6. When the dough has risen, divide into 4 parts and roll each into a long rope and shape into pretzels. Let it rise some more.
  7. Dip the pretzels in the baking soda water bath and place your pretzels in non-stick greased baking sheet. (I used non-stick parchment paper over my baking sheet, the bottom of my pretzels were stuck the first try.)
  8. If you want salted pretzels, about 1 tablespoon (or less) of coarse salt over your pretzels before baking.
  9. Bake in a preheated (450 F) for about 10 minutes or until golden.
  10. If you want, brush with melted butter. (or just cut a slab and let it melt.)
  11. EAT! make sure you don’t burn your tongue/mouth though.

If you want cinnamon pretzels,

  1. Melt a stick of butter in a shallow bowl (but big enough to fit a pretzel).
  2. In another shallow bowl combine cinnamon and sugar.
  3. Dip pretzel in butter and then dip it in the cinnamon sugar bowl.
  4. EAT! make sure you don’t burn your tongue/mouth though.

Here’s a fun “fact”, while people tend to think that soft pretzels (and pretzels in general) are of Bavarian origin, they are believe to have originated in a small monastery in southern France. A priest used them to reward kids for saying their prayers properly.

Get in my Belly! Grown Up Grilled Cheese Sandwich

NOM!NOM!NOM!

Thought grilled cheese sandwiches are only for kids? Well, you thought wrong, my friend! As easy at is to make a fool proof (unless the fool forgets about the sandwich in the pan), classic, cheesy, comforting grilled cheese sandwich, upgrading it to fit a more mature palette is just as simple. Think about it, customarily, it's just American singles on white bread. Buttery, yummy, reminiscent of your childhood snack/meal time after-school. This version, it's the same base. Cheese and bread; only this sandwich has BACON. Yes, you read it, BACON.

It can also pass as just a regular BLT except there's not L, instead there's an S (Spinach) and instead of Singles, I used shredded cheese, and added some sauteed onions and garlic.

ingredients (for 2)

* 1 cup sliced onion rounds
* 1 large garlic clove, minced
* 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheese (American, Cheddar, Mex Mix, whatever you feel like)
* 4 (1 1/2-ounce) slices hearty bread (I am obsessed with Dave's Killer Bread!)
* 2 cups fresh spinach leaves
* 4 (1/4-inch-thick) slices tomato $
* 4 slices bacon, cooked $

let’s do this!

1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Cook your bacon, once cooked, let it rest in a paper towel lined plate. Leave the bacon fat/drippings in pan.
2. Cook onion and garlic in bacon fat for 10 minutes or until tender and golden brown, stirring occasionally.
3. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons cheese over each of 2 bread slices and top them each with spinach, tomato slices onion mixture, and bacon slices. Again, add more cheese and top it off with the remaining bread slices.

From here you can either choose to have a BST (Bacon Spinach Tomato sandwich) or you can..

4. In the same skillet where you cooked the bacon and onion mixture, over medium-high heat, place sandwiches and cook for 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown and cheese melts.

et voila. grown-up, way mature, grilled cheese sandwich for your hungry inner child. Enjoy!!

Get In My Belly! Korean Beef Stew (Filipino Style?)

Get in my belly!

When I was in high school, my mom who is not the greatest cook (but is the greatest mom!) would occasionally cook something so good, you wish she'd cook it everyday. Once she came up with (or got the recipe from an aunt or something) a grape jelly meatball concoction. Yes, it's just as unhealthy as it sounds but it was good at the time. She also made a mean seafood pasta linguine with shrimps and mussels (I know for sure, there were shrimps, mussels not so much.)

My most favorite of all, though, was her Korean Beef Stew. This one, I believe, she learned from one of my cousins. I could eat this for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and the 4th meal. Best with a hot bowl of rice. I loved every drop in her pot of stew. Unfortunately, my mom never wrote things down. Even worse, she is now addled with dementia. So, I searched high and low (no, not really.. google and a little reading is all I needed.) for a recipe and found the dopamine junkie's recipe.

Korean Beef Stew by The Dopamine Junkie

1-2 lbs beef short ribs, cut crosswise (not flanken)
1 part dark soy sauce (Personally, I used the Datu Puti (Filipino brand), Chinese variety is okay. Do not use Kikkoman!)
1 part water
1 part white or brown sugar
1 head garlic, peeled
1 onion, cut in half
1 piece ginger, the size of two thumbs, quartered
4 bay leaves
1 large Korean or Jalapeno pepper cut in half (I didn't have any peppers at home)
10 peppercorns
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, roasted in a pan until brown

It is so simple - In a good pot, combine all the ingredients except for the sesame seeds and the scallions. Simmer on low heat for two hours or until the meat is tender. Top with roasted sesame seeds and scallions and serve with rice.

Et voila! You're all set. If you want you can steam some bokchoy or other veggies as a side for this meal. Enjoy and let me know how you like it!

Pan de Sal

Get in my belly!

Pan de Sal. If you're Filipino, it is your birthright to have had this in your belly. My nieces and nephew are all American born and they love Pan de Sal.

According to the website: traveleronfoot, bread was introduced to the Filipinos by the Spaniards; they brought in wheat flour, as wheat does (or did) not grow in the Philippines, and the bread-making techniques. Preferring, bread to rice and the importance of the Christian host (for Catholic communion) - which can only be made from the purest, finest wheat flour, it was necessary for the Spaniards to bring wheat to the islands.

"When the Filipinos began baking their own bread, they came up with the crumbs-sprinkled pan de sal, a pinch of salt that originally gave this simple Filipino bread its distinctive flavor and thus its name."

INGREDIENTS
5 cups bread flour, plus more
1 cup, plus 1 tbsp. sugar
1½ tsp. kosher salt
2½ cups milk
1 tbsp. active dry yeast
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted (half a stick)
1 egg
1 cup plain bread crumbs

Whisk flour, 1 cup sugar, and salt in a bowl.

Stir 1 tbsp. sugar, 1 cup milk, and yeast in another bowl; let sit until foam for 15 minutes (the bottom portion of the photo on the left is what it should look like after 15 minutes.

Add remaining milk, plus the melted butter and egg; whisk until smooth.

Slowly stir in dry ingredients until dough comes together. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough until smooth.

Transfer to a lightly greased bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap; set in a warm place until doubled in size, about 45 minutes to an hour. I set my dough inside the oven (not preheated.)

Place bread crumbs on a plate.
On a lightly floured surface, divide dough into 4 equal pieces.
Working with 1 piece at a time, pat dough into a 4″ x 9″ rectangle about ½″ thick.
Working from one long end, roll dough into a tight cylinder.
Cut dough crosswise into five 1½″ rolls. Gently coat cut sides of rolls in bread crumbs; place cut side up on baking sheets, spaced about 2″ apart (closer if you like to pull-apart pan de sal)
Cover loosely with plastic wrap or a towel; set in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. (Again, oven for me.)

After an hour, heat oven to 350°. Bake rolls until golden, 15–20 minutes.

It seems simple right?

Moving to a town where I only know of another Filipino, you bet finding Pan de Sal is impossible. Being from Southern California and surrounded by hundreds of Filipino restaurants, bakeries, and grocery stores, I didn't think I'd have the need to learn how to make them. I'm glad I did but now I have to figure out how to keep them away from Ben. He likes them more than I do.

Eco-Friendly Holiday Ideas: Put a BIRD on it!

Put A Bird On It!

So while I browsed pinterest for eco-friendly holiday ideas, I stumbled upon some cute bird inspired/related holiday decorations for the house. I thought, "hey, cool idea!" and then the line from a Portlandia skit kept on repeating in my head over and over and over. So I decided to "put a bird on it"! I'm putting birds on my website.

These bird themed holiday decorations are so cute, I want to buy them all! They get bonus points for being eco-friendly too!

Snow Owl Ornaments

Blogger Pam has shared the instructions for making these cute owl tree ornaments made from toilet roll tubes. If you want to DIY some ornaments for your tree, the instructions are found here.

This is a great way to keep the kids busy and entertained while keeping them immersed in some arts and crafts.

Party Birds!

Be the hostess with the mostest by giving away cute party favors from your holiday party!

This flock of birds are made-to-order and are made from 100% Recycled Eco Friendly Felt, Hand Embroidery, & Vintage Fabric & Buttons. Ribbon is attached for hanging. You can buy a set of 8 here.

L’oiseau

Bambeco, a sustainable lifestyle online shop, is offering this cute whimsical and eco-friendly ornament for your holiday tree. Made with natural wool felt, this bird is hand-sewn, hand-embroidered and accented with button details with red & white stitching.

My favorite discovery from their site? They try to eliminate their carbon impact thru Carbonfree® Shipping!

Sleepy Owl

Made from upcycled felted wool knitwear, lamb wool, leather, and wool yarn, this seven inch owl comes from Pori, Finland and can be purchased here.



this set was sold and no longer available. 🙁

SoulRole’s Little Bird

Made from handwoven Nepalese hemp and filled with Organic Cotton, this eco-friendly bird will spruce up your tree this holiday! You can buy this from SoulRole's etsy page.

so these are not birds..

It's too cute and simple not to share though.

Do you have any eco-friendly holiday decor tips to share?

Being Green and Extreme Couponing

Since moving to Oregon, I have been more conscious of my spending; thanks to the fact that I have no cash flowing in and I am not comfortable spending my boyfriend’s hard earned money which he uses to pay for the roof over my head and the food that we eat. So I thought, if I can’t help with in-flow, I’ll help with the outflow.

One night, ok it took more than one night, I decided to watch “Extreme Couponing” on Netflix. It was amazing!  For the life of me, I couldn’t imagine going to a grocery store and just buy crates worth of junk. I always felt like extreme couponers are hoarders. Some of the extreme couponers featured weren’t so bad. They worked with Food Banks and other charitable organizations, send stuff to deployed service members but really, it wasn’t so much being judgmental on my part, it’s more about me wishing I had my own stockpile. So I started..

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Honey Sriracha Chicken

Before moving to Central Oregon, I gotta admit, I was spoiled. I didn’t have to worry about budgeting when it comes to food. It’s kinda different when you start a life with someone who is quite stingy when it comes to money. (It’s ok, Ben doesn’t read my blog. LOL.) In all honesty, I’m glad Ben likes his money. I have to learn how to save like the guy. He is awesome at it; but I digress..

So when we moved here, being the good girl (with built-in Catholic Schoolgirl guilt) that I am, I decided to look for budget recipes and togive it a try; budget cooking that is. I found this recipe from budgetbytes the first month and I have been making it about once a month since then (we’ve been here for almost four months now.) I’m not too keen on Sriracha but this recipe is sooooo good.

 

HONEY SRIRACHA CHICKEN THIGHS ALA BUDGETBYTES

ingredients:

  • 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs (6 pcs) $5.98
  • 2 cloves garlic $0.16
  • 1 inch fresh ginger $0.11
  • 2 Tbsp sriracha hot sauce $0.17
  • 1½ Tbsp soy sauce $0.15
  • 1 Tbsp rice vinegar $0.11
  • 2 Tbsp honey $0.24
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar $0.03
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil $0.02
  • ½ cup water $0.00
  • 2 Tbsp corn starch $0.12
  • ¼ bunch cilantro (or green onions) $0.20 (forgot to buy cilantro so I used scallions instead)

Let’s do this:

  • Mince the garlic and grate the ginger into a bowl. Add the sriracha, soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey, brown sugar, vegetable oil, and water. Stir to combine. Add the corn starch and stir until dissolved.
  • Add the chicken thighs to a large zip top bag or a shallow dish. Add half of the marinade/sauce mixture to the chicken and toss to coat (be sure to stir the sauce before adding it to the chicken. The garlic, ginger, and corn starch tend to settle to the bottom.) Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Save the unused portion of the marinade for later.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Add the chicken and its marinade to a 8×8 inch casserole dish. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, basting the chicken with the juices half way through.
  • While the chicken is baking, add the second reserved marinade (the half that wasn’t used with the chicken) to a small sauce pot. Bring it up to a simmer over medium heat while stirring. As soon as it reaches a simmer it will thicken into a nice glaze. Set the sauce aside.
  • When the chicken is finished baking, spread the thickened sauce over each piece of chicken. Add fresh cilantro or sliced green onions and serve.


Bon appétit! Enjoy!

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