REMEMBER WHEN your mom or lola would give you sopas or arroz caldo when you’re sick? Wasn’t that the fun part of being sick then? Well, the Westerners have their own chicken soup versions, too. It is universally accepted that chicken soup boosts the immune system. Apart from that, it provides a sense of comfort and warmth. This warm and delicious soup dish, and all its other versions, is beneficial because it is packed with vitamins and minerals we get from the vegetables, meat, and broth.
However, there are times we find the usual preparations boring that we want to add deeper flavors just to whet our appetites all the more. It’s the same with moms looking for ways to make their children eat vegetables or feed on healthier options instead of fast food preps or processed meats such as hotdogs, chicken nuggets, tocino etc., or with chefs who make fusion dishes to come up with more interesting offerings.
Recently, a dear friend of mine went through radiation treatment and we know how restrictive and limiting patient diets are. Sending a fruit basket is a no-brainer, but it lacks the touch of TLC—tender loving care. So I went for the tried and trusted Chicken Tinola, a.k.a. Chicken Meatloaf in Sayote Purée with Sili Leaves and Malunggay Pesto. It’s hot, healthy, comforting, and such a familiar dish! Or is it? There’s the mystery and of course, you can try this at home.
Have fun with the recipe!
Chicken Meatloaf in Sayote Purée with Sili-Malunggay Pesto
Prep time: 15 minutes | Cook time: 45 minutes
Good for 2 to 4 persons
1/2 kg Chicken bones
2 Tbsp Oil
1 Tbsp Ginger, sliced thinly
1 Tbsp Garlic, minced
1 Tbsp Red Onion, chopped
1 Tbsp Tomato, chopped
Salt to taste
Water to cover
1 kg Sayote, cubed
Procedure. In a saucepot, heat oil then sauté first the Ginger and Garlic until lightly golden. Add in Onions and Tomatoes and season with a pinch of Salt. Cook over low heat until onion and tomatoes are a mush.
Add in chicken bones and mix until it turns slightly gray in color. Pour water until bones are fully covered. Bring to a boil then simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Add in Sayote and cook until fork tender. Remove Sayote and strain the broth. Place Sayote and broth in a blender and blend until fine.
Chicken Meatloaf Ingredients
350 gm ground Chicken
1 Tbsp Ginger
1 Tbsp Garlic
1 Tbsp Red Onion
1 pc Egg
1/2 Tbsp Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp ground Black Pepper
Procedure. In a bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well. Spread into llanera or baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and steam for 30-40 minutes. Test with a toothpick, if it comes out clean then it is cooked. Set aside and let cool. When cool, cut into cubes. Set aside.
1/2 c Oil
1/4 c Sili Leaves
1/4 c Malunggay Leaves
Procedure. In a blender, combine the ingredients and blend until fine. Pour into a sauce pan and bring to simmer. Cook for about 2 minutes and set aside.
In a saucepot, pour Sayote Purée and add Chicken Meatloaf cubes. Bring to a quick boil.
Serve in a bowl and drizzle with Sili-Malunggay Leaves Pesto.
Note: This Tinola version may be enjoyed with either steamed rice or toasted bread. Enjoy!
Chef Chris Lachenal strives to elevate Filipino cuisine and revive dishes that are slowly losing popularity. A former chef instructor, he emphasized the importance of understanding the process of things in order to grasp refinement in food. As a chef-for-hire he satisfies his clients, always. He is creative, passionate, and believes that everything must be done with love and that the smallest detail makes a difference.