This recipe may seem to be out of the season because this usually is prepared during Christmas but I guess it isn't that bad to share it to you my co-bitlanders so you could test it for yourself and see if it fits your taste. Chicken Hamonado is a favorite not only because it's easy to prepare but because it tastes as wonderful as it looks! It is a dish made of whole chicken injected with spices and wine and stewed in pineapple juice. The ratio of the ingredients is not really that precise but depends upon your preferences. So the following are the tips in preparing your Chicken Hamonado:
Tip # 1: Use rock salt. Yes, rock salt is the correct salt to use. Rock salt's saltiness is easier to adjust than that of the finer ones. So all you've got to do is pound it with your mortar and pestle so you get it finer and that would dissolve easier in the wine.
Tip # 2: More salt = salty, More sugar = sweet. Always stick to your preference or the preference of the ones who will eat the dish. If you like your hamonado sweet, then use more sugar for this one. A good kind of sugar to use is the brown one because it isn't too sweet and it is a healthier option than the white one.
Tip # 3: Use a Chinese Wine. Chinese wine contains a lot of herbs and spices that help in the flavor development. For the hamonado that I made, I used this chinese wine below -
Tip # 4: Mix your "injectable" well before soaking your chicken. Your "injectable" contains the salt, sugar, and the Chinese Wine. You have to completely dissolve first the solids into the wine and then use a syringe to inject it to your chicken. Concentrate on the breasts as these parts are the ones with larger meat.
Tip # 5: Slow-cooking. Allow the chicken to slowly cook in pineapple juice so the flavor is well-absorbed. After injecting the wine, salt, and sugar mixture, simmer your chicken in pineapple juice, garlic, and laurel leaf under low fire.
Tip # 6: Garnish and Presentation. For a more palatable result do not forget to garnish the finished product. In the picture below, I have sprinkled cinnamon-sugar mixture onto the cut chicken meat and used a kitchen torch to caramelize the surface.
Tip # 7: Always take note. Take note of the taste and the changes and improvements that you want to include in your next set of hamonado. If you get the correct flavor on your first try then Congratulations! But if you don't, always give it your best and try again. Do not go into abrupt changes on the flavor if you are not an expert. And always, enjoy.