Chicken Adobo with Tamarind is a unique twist on our classic adobo. Braised in soy sauce, tamarind pulp, and aromatics, it’s a hearty and delicious dish perfect with steamed rice.
One great thing about food blogging and working online is being able to meet and get to know wonderful people who share the same interests without even leaving home. I’ve connected with a few bloggers on social media and I am glad that our casual chats online have turned into amazing friendships.
Another great thing about food blogging is discovering and trying new dishes. I grew up to the conventional adobo braised in soy sauce, vinegar, and garlic but since I started this blog, I’ve made different versions from adobong dilaw, adobong pula, to adobong puti.
Who knew there are so many fantastic ways to enjoy this classic Filipino stew?
And then I came across this adobong manok sa sampalok in one of the cookbooks I bought in the Philippines and I was like, Whoa! Must.Try.This.
Guys, it didn’t disappoint. The unique twist of replacing vinegar with tamarind juice as the souring agent provided a refreshing change of flavor I couldn’t get enough of. Seriously one of the best adobos you’ll ever have!
I used tamarind powder to make the dish as finding fresh green tamarind fruit here in my neck of the woods is like trying to find gold. If you do have access to the fresh fruit, follow the easy steps below.
How to extract tamarind pulp
- In a saucepan over medium heat, combine one cup of water and about 8 to 10 tamarind pods. Simmer until softened and skins begin to burst.
- Repeatedly press with a large spoon to extract pulp and drain using a fine-mesh sieve. Discard seeds and skins.
- Use the tamarind pulp in the recipe in place of the tamarind powder and one cup of water.
- In a wide pan over medium heat, heat oil. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened.
- Add chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and juices run clear. I used wings in the recipe but any bone-in chicken parts would do.
- Add tamarind powder and stir until chicken wings are fully coated. Or use 1 cup of extracted tamarind pulp if the fresh fruit is available (see above).
- Add water and soy sauce. Bring to a boil and then lower heat, cover, and continue to cook until chicken is tender and sauce is reduced.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with chopped green onions and toasted garlic, if desired. Serve hot.
How to serve
- Serve with steamed rice for lunch or dinner. I like to enjoy the dish with pickled fruits and veggies such as atchara and burong mangga as condiment on the side to cut through the richness.
- Adobo is a great make-ahead meal as it freezes and reheats well. To store leftovers, allow to cool completely and transfer in a container with a tight-fitting lid. Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 2 months.
- To reheat, place in a wide pan and heat, stirring regularly, to an internal temperature of 165 F.
Chicken Adobo with Tamarind
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 onion, peeled and sliced thinly
- 5 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 3 pounds chicken wings, cut into cut into drummettes and wingettes
- 1 packet (1.4 ounces) tamarind powder
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a wide skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened.
- Add chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and juices run clear.
- Add tamarind powder and stir until chicken wings are fully coated.
- Add water and soy sauce. Bring to a boil.
- Lower heat, cover, and continue to cook until chicken is tender and sauce is reduced.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with chopped green onions and toasted garlic if desired. Serve hot.