National Burger Month 05/11/2010: Pork Adobo

Q: What would Filipino pork adobo look like if it pretended to be a burger?
A: Brown. Pretty damn brown. Come to think of it, all of burger month has been pretty brown. But this was pretty darn brown. Like the skin of oppressed peoples. Pork adobo burger is as brown as they come.

I think in this case the concept was cooler than the execution. I mean it tasted like pork adobo, but the texture of the ground pork just didn't match my expectations. Maybe if I were not Filipino and I have never known what a real adobo tastes like or felt like, I wouldn't object. But even the household German said the texture of the meat was strange. I would prefer that my adobo came in pork and chicken chunks and not ground anything.

So here's how you do an adobong burger.

1/2 pound ground pork
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 cup Filipino soy sauce
3/4 cup water
3 cloves of garlic minced
1 bay leaf
1 tsp peppercorns
juice of half a lemon
some ground black pepper

In a skillet, combine the vinegar, the soy sauce, the water, the garlic, the bay leaf, the peppercorns and the lemon juice. Form patties from the pork and spice up with the ground black pepper. Stash the pork patties in the liquid mix for about 20 minutes. After a while, take the patties out and reserve them. Start the stove up and bring the soy-vinegar mixture to a simmer. Once it's simmering, I guess you can plop the pork back in and braise it for about 4 minutes per side. Normally, in an adobo, you would braise the pork or chicken chunks in the simmering liquid for about 20 minutes, or until the liquid reduces, adding water before it totally sizzles away. But since these are patties, you don't have to braise them for 20 minutes. Cooking time was much shorter.

I served these on warm Filipino pan de sal buns and topped with a salad of mango, tomato and onion.

It tastes right. It just didn't feel right. It was certainly brown enough.