This is Shortcake's first Pork Adobo.
What I've done here is based on what Bobby Chinn did plus some googling and a touch of personal taste.
The ingredients, this serves 2 to 3 hearty eaters:
- Approx 500g pork or chicken, estimate more if using chicken on bones or pork ribs. (I had a combination of pork belly and spare ribs, left over in the freezer, so what the heck)
- 6 to 8 stalks of lemongrass - cut away top parts and crush the bulbs
- Half cup of white vinegar (I used white rice vinegar as no one seem to specify what kind of vinegar exactly)
- Quarter cup of light soy sauce
- Half a head of garlic - finely chopped
- An inch of ginger - crushed / minced
- 2 small onions
- 1 teaspoon of black peppercorn, crushed - or use coarse ground version
- 3 to 4 red hot chili padi (bird's eye chilies) - sliced off head and slit sides to remove seeds.
- 2 to 3 tablespoons of corn starch dissolved in water
- Cooking oil
- Pinch of salt & some brown sugar (or any kinda sugar)
All the main ingredients at a glance.
- Heat oil in a wok (or deep frying pan)
- Sauté garlic, onions, lemongrass stalks, ginger and black pepper till fragrant.
- Add the meat to the pan and 'brown'.
- Add chili padi.
- Add soy sauce, vinegar and 1 cup of water.
- Cover and simmer for 20 minutes over medium flame.
- Add cornstarch dissolved in water to thicken the gravy.
- Add brown sugar, salt and/or pepper to suit your taste.
- Cover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes over low/medium flame.
- Taste check; see if you need to thicken the gravy, then adjust corn starch/water, then simmer again.
- Serve hot with veggies and steamed rice.
Suggestions, hints and tips:
- I added some brown sugar to balance out the vinegar just a little.
- You can adjust the level of saltiness and color by using less soy sauce.
- Of course you can adjust the flavors by modifying the quantities of peppercorn, salt, sugar etc.
- If chili padi is over the top for you, you can use paprika powder, personally I would have added MORE chili padi but hubby will need a fire extinguisher after that!
- Control the gravy's consistency by adjusting the level of water and cornstarch. We like it thick and rich so it coats the rice nicely!
I hope this is helpful to anyone who loves meat dishes with gravy! If you have any pointers to make this dish better do feel free to share!