20 April 2018

Chicken Tinola

Having a child who's now in her big kid years surely has its many benefits. One of them is no longer needing to make her food cute just she'd eat it. We are now done with broccoli trees, rice mountain and scrambled egg sand. Well, the baby will soon eat solid food but not those I've mentioned yet so I'm now enjoying the freedom to serve real adult dishes. I'm glad my daughter eats most veggies that I serve her. I trained her to eat whatever's on the table, that's why. It wasn't a walk in the park; there were soooo many table discussions about how blessed she is to have me at home, how blessed she is to have warm meals and how blessed she is to eat more than three times a day. I think it got to her. She now eats well like a sensible adult. I mean, there are older people than me who decided to be picky eaters for the rest of their lives. 

Anyway, one thing that a lot of parents are wrongly doing when preparing food for their kids is serving them a kid-unfriendly dish. And they'd be mad all of a sudden 'cause they expect their kids to eat and like it! So cruel. Folks, food has to be pleasant to the eyes and the palate of a kid, okay. They will eventually learn to love what you love to eat now. Just train them gradually but not in a forceful way. I did that and guess what Sophia's first favorite real ulam that has veggies? TINOLA!

So if you're always lost in the kitchen but wants to sometimes impress the fam with a warm Filipino family dinner, here's my recipe to help you out –


- 2 pieces chicken leg quarters, chopped
- 2 medium sayote, chopped
- a bunch of chili leaves or malunggay
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 medium onion, julienned
- 1 small knob of ginger, julienned
- 3 to 4 cups of water or rice washing
- 4 tablespoons fish sauce
- ground black pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil


1. Make sure chicken cuts are clean, no blood or gizzard. Place in a bowl and marinate with fish sauce and ground black pepper for at least an hour. Put in the refrigerator to avoid contamination. 

2. After marinating, get your fave cookware. I use kawali with cover when cooking tinola. Sauté ginger first in slow to medium fire, allowing it to release its natural flavor in the cooking oil. Add onion and garlic. Cook until onion is translucent. Do not burn or else you'll have bitter soup. 

3. Add chicken pieces one by one, skin side down. Set aside the remaining fish sauce marinade. Brown the chicken cuts. 

4. Add fish sauce marinade and water. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes. 

5. Add sayote and cook until tender. Do not put back the cover so the veggies will stay in its vibrant green color and not grayish green. 

6. Put off fire then add chili leaves. Allow its own heat cook them leaves. Serve with rice and a smile! 

You can use all 4 cups of water if your kids are like mine, who pours soup over rice; if it were otherwise, 3 cups will do. Also, if you want more color to entice your kid to eat, add carrots! Please tag me @royaldomesticity on Instagram or Facebook if you'll try my recipe. ❤️ 

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