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Tinolang Manok is a great tasting and healthy dish to prepare for your family. It is easy to cook and friendly on the budget. I like the idea of having tinolang manok at least once per week (particularly during cold weather) because it keeps me stay warm and it is also one of my comfort foods.
I had no idea on what to cook today for dinner. The lazy side of me is suggesting to just sit down and relax while waiting for dinner to be ready . However, I always insisted that I’d be the one to prepare dinner everyday because cooking helps me feel better – no matter how hectic my day was. So I checked the fridge to see what I have available. There was chicken, chayote, and some green leafy veggies. I asked my wife if she had a particular chicken dish for dinner, she said in a sweet voice “i-tinola mo na lang yan”. It was music to my ears.
It so happened that the veggies available in the fridge were malunggay and hot pepper leaves. I’m not sure if it was just coincidence, but I believe that it was meant to be. There was a feeling of excitement and relief. I was looking forward for something comforting to have for dinner, and it is about to happen. For some reason, having a warm chicken soup such as tinolang manok relieves my stress and anxiety. It also keeps me relaxed.
Benefits of Tinolang Manok
Excellent source of protein – Our muscles rely on amino acids in order to build, repair, and develop. Protein is composed of amino acids. This means that eating high protein food such as chicken can help keep our muscles healthy.
Protein is important for our babies and kids. They need it to support growth and physical development. Eating more protein together with soup plus with added vegetables like malunggay, will help moms produce more milk resulting to a healthier breastfeeding. Whenever there is a new mommy in our clan, my aunts will always tell them to eat malunggay because it can help increase breast milk production.
Source of Vitamin B3 – Vitamin B3 keeps our body healthy by improving cholesterol levels. It can also help improve our cardiovascular health. This means that it is good for the heart.
Stimulates the appetite – I think that tasty and delicious dishes such as tinolang manok or chicken tinola will automatically trigger your appetite the moment that you smell its aroma. What more after taking your first sip on the warm soup? “Mapapasarap ang kain mo”. When eating tinola, I pour some soup over my rice. Sometimes, I overdo it to the point where it looks like “lugaw”. It helps increases my appetite and make me enjoy it better. How about you? Can you tell us how you eat tinola?
How to Cook Tinolang Manok
As I mentioned earlier, tinolang manok is easy to cook. I started by sautéing garlic, onion, and ginger for a few minutes – just until the onion gets soft. The chicken, which I cut into small serving pieces, were added and cooked to the point that the outer part turns light brown. I added water and waited until it started to boil.
When boiling meat, I always turn the heat down to low. Sometimes it is better to put it to a simmer (this is a point where the temperature of the water is near boiling). I do it this way so that the flavors from the meat get extracted fully while making the meat tender.
Make sure that the scums and oil floating on the soup is removed. I do this using a wide spoon. Once the soup is clear from scums, add the chicken cube. I use this ingredient because it helps make the soup taste better. The vegetables such as chayote, malunggay (moringa), and hot pepper leaves are added afterwards. I use fish sauce to season the dish.
Try this Classic Tinolang Manok Recipe. Let me know what you think.
- 2 lbs. chicken cut into serving pieces
- 1 cup malunggay leaves
- 1 cup hot pepper leaves
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 piece unripe papaya wedged
- 6 cups water
- 1 piece Knorr chicken cube
- 1 piece onion sliced
- 4 cloves garlic crushed and chopped
- 3 thumbs ginger julienne
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce patis
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- Heat oil in a pot.
- Sauté garlic, onion, and ginger. Add the ground black pepper.
- When the onion starts to get soft, add the chicken. Cook for 5 minutes or until it turns light brown.
- Pour the water. Let boil. Cover and then set the heat to low. Boil for 40 minutes.
- Scoop and discard the scums and oil on the soup.
- Add the Knorr chicken cube and chayote or papaya. Stir. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
- Put the malunggay and hot pepper leaves in the pot and pour the fish sauce in. Continue to cook for 2 minutes.
- Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve.
- Share and enjoy!