News brief: Google Doodle highlights Filipino adobo


Google Doodle highlighted the “tender, juicy and soulful” Filipino “adobo” through an illustration by Filipino artist Anthony Irwin on March 13.

The illustration done by Irwin depicts two children looking and then smelling the Filipino dish on top of rice. A garlic bulb, bay leaf, chicken wing, bottle of coconut milk and giant spoon and fork replace the name for Google.

The Google Doodle depicts two children sniffing the chicken adobo, while the ingredients used for adobo spell out the word “Google.” (AILEEN JANEE CORPUS/ Ethic News)

The word “adobo”, according to the Filipino blog Pepper, comes from the Spanish word “adobar” which means “marinade” or “pickling sauce.” Despite the Spanish name and other versions of “adobo” in Mexico and Spain, the origin of the dish came from the Philippines. 

According to The Spruce Eats, “adobo” got its Spanish name when Spaniards in the 16th century came to the Philippine Islands and noticed how many indigenous people were preserving their food by using the high acid and vinegar and the high salt content in soy sauce.

By cooking a desired protein with vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, peppercorns, and bay leaves for anywhere from one to two hours, “adobo” tastes better as it ages which allows the flavors of each ingredient to shine.

The most popular version of “adobar” would be “adobong kapampangan” which has chicken and pork, but Filipino “adobo” varies from province to province and household to household. In Southern Luzon where coconuts are bountiful, Bicolanos make “adobo sa gata” that combines coconut milk into the dish. Another version of the dish is “adobong puso ng saging” which is a vegetable based “adobo” that uses sliced banana hearts instead of meat.

“I love adobo,” says Redlands East Valley senior Charlize Munar, “It describes very traditional [Filipino] food. If I thought of ‘Filipino,’ I would definitely think of adobo. It’s a taste of home.”

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