How To Make Bibingka

Baked Rice cake with Banana Leaves
Bibingka can be eaten all year around but its very popular during Christmas Filipinos make plenty of rice cakes, all regions have their own rice cake menu but the most popular is Bibingka (baked rice cake) and Puto bumbong (steamed rice cake). It is said that the reason why we have plently of rice cakes during this time of the year as the rice harvest just finished. So there are plentiful of grains.
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Bibingka (baked rice cake)

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Ingredients

  • What You Need
  • 256g cups rice flour
  • 200g sugar
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 5 eggs
  • pinch salt
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • banana leaves, cleaned
  • cake tin
  • Topping (optional)
  • cheddar cheese
  • salted eggs
  • butter

Instructions

1

How To Make It

2

In a large bowl mix rice four, sugar, salt and baking powder

3

Add eggs, coconut milk and mix well making sure it’s incorporate well

4

Place the banana leaves in a cake tin, make sure the banana doesn’t rip then pour the rice flour mixture and add salted eggs if preferred

5

Bake in a 350 F oven for about 20 to 25 minutes or until golden, use toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean

6

Remove from heat and spread butter on top and sprinkle with sugar

7

Serve warm or cold, enjoy!

Notes

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Tsokolate (hot chocolate)

Here’s a fantastic winter warmer! During Noche Buena in the Philippines many homes prepare a hot chocolate with cocoa tablea and milk or cream. They usually drink Tsocolate after midnight mass because the weather is cooler around Christmas everyone enjoys a hot chocolate with their meal. 

Ingredients

  • 900ml milk or cream
  • 1 (200g) roll tablea cacao
  • 2tbsp sugar
  • 100g ground peanuts (optional)

Instructions

1

Grind the tablea using a coffee grinder or use a grater, put it aside for later

2

Heat milk over medium heat until bubbles begin to form around the edge stir regularly to avoid film layer from forming on top

3

Mix the tablea and sugar into the the milk stirring continuously until completely dissolved (Add ground peanut at this point)

4

Place the milk mixture into a jug, twirl using a batidor or whisk for about 2 to 3 minute or until frothy. If using electric frother whisk for about 30 to 40 seconds or until frothy

5

Best serve hot!

Filipino Spaghetti

Filipino style spaghetti is a sweet spaghetti with hotdogs that’s the closest description of it and popularised by the food chain Jollibee. It became so popular that it’s one of the favourite food at parties and occasions even during Christmas dinner! This is my version of it, I know it may seem strange but don’t knock it until it you try it. You might enjoy it!
Ok ok…Italians and Europians are rolling their eyes. I know this is not very Italian but I can assure you it tastes good. I remember making a proper spaghetti, I even made my own sauce, the pasta was cooked just right then topped with a good handful of cheese. I let my little nephew try it, warning him that this is how Italians make it. He spat it out saying why isn’t it sweet?! Oh dear! I had to educate him the poor boy.

Filipino Spaghetti

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Ingredients

  • 300g minced beef or pork
  • 500g spaghetti, cooked and drained
  • 2tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 20 pcs frankfurters or hot dogs, sliced
  • 500g-600g passata
  • 2tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 tbsp cooking oil
  • 150g sugar
  • 100g banana ketchup (homemade banana ketchup recipe here)
  • 1tsp salt
  • a pinch of pepper
  • 200g grated cheese, for topping

Instructions

1

In a hot pan heat oil, sauté garlic and onion until translucent or see through

2

Cook minced pork or beef for 10 minutes then add tomato paste and banana ketchup, cook for another 5 minutes

3

Add sausages, passata, sugar, salt and pepper. Stir until all the ingredients are combined

4

On medium heat, simmer the sauce while stirring occasionally for 15-20 minutes

5

Serve with spaghetti pasta and top with grated cheese

 

Salabat (ginger and lemon tea)

Salabat is a traditional tea popular during rainy season, when someone is feeling under the weather and during Noche Buena, a feast after midnight mass on Christmas morning. This traditional tea is simple to make and refreshing.

I remember when I was living in the Philippines, on Christmas eve the food for the feast will be ready on the table for Noche Buena. While waiting to attend the mass as a child we would sleep early and be woken up just before the mass. We would go to the mass and welcome Christmas with everyone, afterwards we would go back to the house for the feast! As we go out of the church, just outside I can see all the food and drink vendors outside selling Bibingka (baked rice cake) and Puto Bumbong (steamed rice cake). There’s also some hot Kape (coffee), tsokolate (chocolate) and Salabat (ginger & lemon tea) for the church goers to have after the mass because the weather is usually cold.

Try this recipe for a refreshing yet warming drink! 

Salabat (ginger and lemon tea)

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Ingredients

  • 300ml water
  • 3 tablespoons sugar or honey
  • 50g-80g ginger piece, peeled, crushed and sliced
  • 1 lemon, sliced

Instructions

1

In a saucepan add water and bring to boil on high heat

2

Add ginger and sugar or honey and stir

3

Reduce the heat to low, cover the tea and simmer for 15 minutes the tea will darken in colour and more robust in flavour

4

Turn the heat off, strain ginger or you can leave it if preferred

5

Serve in a mug with a slice of lemon, add more honey or sugar to taste