Sunday, April 12, 2009

Holy Week Treats

As this once a year oath of fasting and abstinence comes to a close, I can't help but take note of some of the things that made it all bearable while staying true to the popular teachings of the Catholic Church.

While on our pilgrimage , we saw this booth just outside the welcome arch of Antipolo city. It was a booth by 'Clarita's BibingkaKo'. Bibingkas are fluffy cakes made with rice flour, cooked with a banana leaf base, topped with either salted eggs or shredded coconut meat. But this one has various fruit jam toppings instead. For a reasonable price of P100, you get 5 pieces with assorted toppings; strawberry jam, ube, macapuno and cheese among others. At first I was apprehensive but as I tasted the treat, I find that the jam really complements the taste of the bibingka. And the bread was cooked to a light, fluffy perfection with a varied crispy texture at the base. And to my surprise, it was this Black foreigner dude who was doing the cooking.

As it was my first time to sample this, it seems they already have branches in most of the SM and Robinson malls. My mom said the place where we bought this was their head branch. On a side note, the Rizal province is not only known for its cement and marble quarries but also for its various 'kakanin' or snacks based from the humble rice grain.

The other treat came from my aunt in Brgy. Prinza in Teresa, Rizal. While visiting there, she whipped up her version of halo halo. Halo halo is like a snow cone but in the place of fruit flavorings, there is milk with sweeteners made from flan, tapioca, sweet beans and macapuno (coconut cooked in sugar). Some versions top it off with either ube (yam) or ice cream. Instead of these, she used watermelon, banana, mango, apple and cantaloupe. Although the fructose in those freshly cut fruits are not enough to give it the sweetness enjoyed by children, not adding processed white sugar makes this concoction more refreshing and cooling. A fine refreshment on this warm summer night.

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