Where To Find Authentic Adobo?
Where else but Whitechapel
If you have never tried it you will wonder how you have lived life for so long and never done so. To start with – what is it? Well, the basic concept is different food types cooked in vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, and black peppercorns, which are browned in oil, and simmered in a marinade resulting in an explosion of taste.
Just about every Filipino loves adobo, from the busy undergraduate with his packed Tupperware box to the business lunching at the latest fusion place in down-town Manilla. There are as many versions of adobo as there are people in the capital, but all of them share the same basic components.
The dish can feature chicken, pork or seafood cuisine. Add a splash of soy sauce, vinegar season with some black peppercorns, bay leaf, and spring onions and boom –perfection. It is a simple dish that can satisfy the needs of the most demanding palate. Filipino food 'the original fusion food' was influenced by the Chinese, Spanish and American colonization, which is the reason why the Philippines can provide a wide range of dishes.
So where can I go in London for an authentic ‘adobo’ experience? Visitors to London need look no further than Whitechapel, near Tower Bridge. Cirillo is a newly rebranded family-owned Filipino restaurant and bar. Serving you top quality authentic Filipino food like Kare-Kare (my personal favourite), a peanut butter-based stew with oxtail for only £8.95, which is a good price compared to other Filipino restaurants in London. Also, Cirilo gets a lot of good reviews like, "There are not enough words to praise this place" and many more on TripAdvisor.
Another dish that is a 'must-try' is a Spanish influenced dish called 'Mechado'. It is a tomato-based beef stew, with some chopped potato, carrots, finely diced pickles and soy sauce for that 'umami' flavour with some spices and bay leaf. Cooked for around 2 hours to make sure that those beef cuts are tender, to allow the meat to just melt in your mouth. Served with some steamed rice.
Now if you are a soup person, you need to try a dish called 'Sinigang', a Filipino favourite. A sour, savoury pool of goodness. A dish that can be pork, seafood or even vegetarian, based with some tamarind and some root vegetables and greens on the side, and never forget the important side of steamed rice, a side that completes a Filipino dish. If you have not tried Filipino food before, then Cirilo is the go-to place, great service, great price, great food. Where else would you find a hidden gem like this in London? Why Whitechapel, of course.