Filipino's propensity to anything grilled/carcinogenic is no mystery. We grill pretty much everything we could get our hands on ! The sight of barbecuing meat or fish could turn any docile Pinoy into a giberous, feral and salivating Pavlov's hound minus the tail . Nothing tantalize us more than the aromatic and intoxicating smoke that clings into our clothes and hair, the blazing and firey charcoal and the sight of meat, oozing and sweating out its own juice out as it sizzles and burns away. An animal's last act sacrifice to please the lesser beings and we are thoroughly grateful.
If only our two legged bestfriends know what awaits them!Tsk! Tsk!
|Photo from Pinoyfolks.blogspot.com|
Chicken is one of the most beloved grilled meat by Pinoys. We love this animal so much , we use practically every anatomical part of it except its feathers. From it head, down to its feet , even its fatty, pointy end. We don't even stop there, we split the whole thing open and take everything out, clean it up and yes skew, drench it in flavorful marinade and put in on the grill. An easy, satisfying and cheap meal that goes wonderfully with rice, lots and lot of rice. We don't even need barbecue sauce for that! A splash of Datu Puti ( no he ain't rich and don't have 3 wives, it's a local vinegar made of coconut sap ), a bit of soy sauce with crushed chillies and garlic and we are the happy as happy could be ....throw in some ice cold beer and we could be more than just merry.
Filipino Chicken Inasal ( barbecue) has a lemony, soury tang and is characteristically---yellow. No our chickens didn't die of hepa but astuete oil or annato seed is used as basting sauce, giving it, its unique tinge.
The typical inasal recipe is pretty straight forward. Make the marinade, put the meat in it, let it suck all the flavors in and put it in the grill. No complicated science. Marinade may vary in each region in the Philippines (We have a lot since Phil. got 7017 islands, depending on the tides). This recipe originally came from central Phil, famous to have the best inasal in the country. Was it really the best? Honestly I can not say, since I still have 7013 other islands to visit. This chicken inasal however, goes to our grill, into our plates and directly into our anticipating oral cavities, I almost forgot to spit the bones out...almost. Yes, it was that good!
Make marinade by combining: 1 cup of coconut vinegar, 1 cup Sprite ( 7 up will do, he he), 1/2 cup calamansi or lime juice, 1 thumb sized crated ginger, 5 crush garlic cloves, 3 tbsp. crushed lemongrass ( bottled but if you could get fresh stalks, that would be even better), 3 tbsp. of brown sugar, 2 tbsp. soy sauce and salt and pepper. Stir until everything is well combined, put chicken meat, which is cut into portions. Make some deep cut/slit to speed up grilling time. Marinate meat for about an hour.
Make basting sauce. In a saucepan, heat 1/2 cup margarine, add in some annato seeds. Take chicken out from the marinade, sieve marinade and discard chunky ingredients. Boil marinade until reduced to half and stir in Annato infused margarine.Grill chicken, basting generously . Simple but it would have you licking your fingers while eating. Yes...it was that good.
This might cut my lifespan few weeks shorter but heck, I'm having it anyway!