Water Spinach (kangkong) Adobo

Hi there!  Here’s a different take for those of you who are familiar with adobo–Filipino style.  This is a perfect vegetarian dish if you want to experience the classic taste of Philippine adobo, but without the meat…

Philippine Adobo (from Spanish adobar: “marinade,” “sauce” or “seasoning”) is a popular dish and cooking process in Philippine cuisine that involves meat, seafood, or vegetables marinated in vinegar, soy sauce, and garlic, which is browned in oil, and simmered in the marinade. It has sometimes been considered as the unofficial national dish in the Philippines.[1]

What I made for you today is kangkong adobo.  Kang Kong is most commonly grown in East, South and Southeast Asia.  It is used extensively in Burmese, Thai, Lao, Cambodian, Malay, Vietnamese, Filipino, and Chinese cuisine, especially in rural or kampung (village) areas. The vegetable is also extremely popular in Taiwan, where it grows well. During the Japanese occupation of Singapore in World War II, the vegetable grew remarkably easily in many areas, and became a popular wartime crop. In the Philippines, a variety of kangkong is grown in canals dug during the American occupation after the Spanish–American War, while another variety growing on land is called Chinese kangkong. [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ipomoea_aquatica]

  • 1 bunch water spinach (**kang kong), chopped in 1 inch length
  • ¼ cup Silver Swan (or similar Filipino brand) soy sauce
  • ⅛ cup Dati Puti (or similar Filipino brand) vinegar
  • 1 head garlic, crushed and chopped
  • ¼ cup broth (chicken, beef, or vegetable); you can also use water.
  • 2 tablespoons olive or similar cooking oil of your preference
  • Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Chili peppers, optional if you like spicy
**If you are unable to find kang kong, you can also use Ong Choy, a Chinese water spinach equivalent to kang kong.

  1. Heat a medium-size cooking pan and pour-in cooking oil.
  2. When the oil is hot, add-in the chopped garlic then saute until golden brown.
  3. Pour-in the soy sauce, vinegar, and broth/ or water in the pan and bring to boil.
  4. Add the kang kong/ or ong choy and saute for approximately 1 to 2 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle salt and ground black pepper to taste.  Add-in chili peppers, if you want to spice it up a bit!
  6. Transfer to a serving plate and top with toasted garlic, if desired.

Best served warm with steam white rice…enjoy!


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