As a child, Edwin's mom told him, "If you want to eat, you should cook it yourself." And that's exactly what he's been doing ever since.
Filipino Chicken Stew (Afritadang Manok)
Chicken afritada, also called afritadang manok, is similar to American beef stew in that its base consists of tomato, potatoes, and carrots. The main difference is that the Filipino version uses chicken, rather than beef. This is because chicken is cheaper and more abundant in the Philippines, which means that every household can afford to make this dish.
The word afritada comes from the Portuguese word fritar, meaning "to fry." Manok is the Tagalog word for chicken. In this dish, the chicken and vegetables are fried first before being simmered in tomato sauce.
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In this recipe, we're taking a shortcut by using a premade afritada mix, which you can find at Asian stores. This recipe is ideal for those who don't have the time to prepare the sauce from scratch.
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- 1 pound chicken thighs
- 1 large potato, peeled and cubed
- 1 large carrot, peeled and cubed
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cubed
- 1/3 cup frozen green peas
- 2 1/4 cups water
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- 1 (30-gram) package afritada mix, available at Asian stores
- Dissolve the afritada mix in 1/4 cup water.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat and fry the potatoes and carrots for 1 minute. Set aside.
- Fry the chicken in the same pan of oil for about 2 minutes on each side, until brown.
- Transfer the chicken to a pot and pour the dissolved afritada mix into the pot. Cover and simmer over medium heat for about 25 minutes.
- Add the fried potatoes and carrots and remaining ingredients. Simmer for another 5 minutes.
- From-scratch afritada sauce: You can make the sauce from scratch, if you prefer. Combine 1 (8-ounce) can of tomato sauce, 1 cup water, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 2 cloves crushed garlic, and 1 bay leaf.
- Additional vegetables: You can add other vegetables, as well, such as onions and fresh tomatoes.
- Chicken broth instead of water: You can use canned chicken broth if desired, but then you should reduce the soy sauce (unless you're using sodium-free chicken broth).
- Consistency: If you desire a more soup-like consistency, feel free to add more water. If you do this, make sure to season accordingly with salt and pepper.