1/2 cup soy sauce
3/4 cup white vinegar
5-6 fat cloves garlic, crushed
2-3 bay leaves
1/2 Tablespoon peppercorns
3 pounds of chicken pieces, bone-in and skin-on (dark meat will lend the most flavor)
More salt to taste, if needed
1. Combine the soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, bay leaves and peppercorns in a Dutch oven or other heavy pot with a lid and stir to combine. Add the chicken pieces, turning them in the sauce to coat them evenly. Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes with the lid askew.
2. Remove the pot from the heat and turn on the broiler. Being careful not to tear the skin, transfer the chicken pieces to a baking sheet lined with foil, and broil about 3 inches from the heat source for about 10 minutes, with the skin side toward the flame. Watch during the second half of broiling to ensure the skin doesn't burn (if it threatens to, move the rack away from the flame and continue). When finished, chicken pieces will be a deep, caramel brown.
3. While the chicken broils, bring the sauce back to a boil in the pot. Boil the sauce with the lid off until it is reduced to the desired consistency; we like it to be a somewhat syrupy glaze (see Why Did the Chicken Cross the Globe? for more on this).
4. When the chicken and sauce are finished, put the chicken pieces in a serving dish, cover with the sauce, and serve with rice.
Thank you to Isabella Breslin for the original version of this recipe, found in The Philippine Cookbook, by Reynaldo Alejandro.