Sunday, December 20, 2009

Adobo Chicken (Kinda)

We had a pretty good freeze here in western Washington a few weeks ago and since we live in condo w/ limited space, I'm forever trying to use the other areas for storage. Now, don't go telling the vermin that lives in the greenbelt we back up to, but we keep a galvanized bucket in the storage closet off our balcony. When it's cold enough in the fall and winter, I store produce out there to make space in the fridge. That and the fact that I do most of my grocery shopping at Costco. I'm cheap. I buy bulk. And I grew up in a household of 5 so I'm used to seeing/making way too much food for a family of's a bit of a sickness. I've all but turned into my mom during the past few years including inheriting her 'love feeding people' gene..but I digress. The freeze ended up turning an unopened 10 lbs bag of organic carrots into a bag full of orange colored icicles. Me being the cheapskate I am, I was determined to use all carrots risking the effects of carotenosis if it meant I didn't have to waste any of the carrots. Carrots are good for you (and cheap). So you'll probably be seeing more carrot posts in the near future.

Anyhow, my mother-in-law turned me on to this crazy popular Filipino recipe. I added a bunch of other stuff I had around the house (yes, carrots included) so it's my spin on the original. You know when you read a recipe and go through the list of ingredients and say to yourself, "Right, I'll never make this." This isn't one of those.

Everything about this recipe is easy and I'd be willing to bet you probably have everything in your fridge and pantry right now. Probably one of the best pitches I can make for this recipe is that it's made in a crockpot and you don't have to brown the meat ahead of time. Just throw everything in, set the timer, go to work, come home, dinner's ready!

Crockpot Adobo Chicken
3 lbs. skinless chicken thighs
1 large onion
4 carrots
1 c. mushrooms
1/2 c. soy sauce
3/4 c. white vinegar
1.5 c. chicken stock
2 garlic cloves
2 tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. black peppercorns
2 bay leaves

Peel and chop onion and carrots into large, 1 inch chunks.

Depending on the size of your mushrooms, I had large criminis (baby portobello mushrooms) so I quartered those.

Just make sure all the veggies are about the same size. Button mushrooms will work also, I just happen to have crimini mushrooms around.

Pour in soy sauce, vinegar and stock. Slice garlic and add to the mix along with the sugar, pepper and bay leaves.

For this recipe I like to use bone-in skinless dark meat chicken but for a low fat version, boneless skinless chicken breast works too.

Just be sure to remove the skin and most of the fat from the chicken. You don't want all that grease floating at the top of the finished product.

After everything's in the pot, give it a stir and make sure the garlic and bay leaves are submerged. Slice garlic and make sure it gets submerged in the liquid, if you leave it on top, it'll turn this strange green color while cooking. Not appetizing. At this point you may find you're really short on liquid.

As it cooks, the veggies will release some of their liquid but if you're still not happy, add chicken stock to your heart's content. Set for 6-8 hours at low and serve w/ some white rice - yum!

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