Friday, December 2, 2011
Recipes from home: Bibingka cupcakes with salted egg and cream cheese
Sometimes, good things come to those who wait. In my case, I finally convinced my mom to pass down her famous bibingka recipe. In my culture, it's rare to share our recipes with each other, especially those special dishes that people rave about. But, I think that plays a big part of why Filipino food hasn't gone mainstream or better yet...recognized by the masses. If it was up to me, Filipino chefs, cooks and foodies around the world would collaborate to make one UNIVERSAL cookbook. One book to rule them all! OK maybe not rule, but instead be a base for all recipes. It's probably an impossible task but it's my goal to push for it.
With that being said, I do believe my mom's bibingka recipe is my favorite. I'm sure there are great recipes out there but I would definitely lobby for parts of it to be included in "The Universal Guide to Philippine Cuisine" There, I named it...I said it first, and hopefully it goes viral someday.
I knew when my mom was cooking bibingka when I was younger. The aroma of the banana leaves filled the house and the I could just taste the buttery, cheesy and savory goodness that was in my near future. She only made bibingka during Christmas time and it made the experience even more special.
So why wait till Christmas to enjoy this ever so popular savor pastry? Bibingka is perfect anytime of the day. Great with your morning coffee, afternoon snack, and pairs well with vanilla ice cream.
Now everyone loves, cupcakes, so I thought it would be cool to make a bibingka version. Easy right? Cut up some banana leaves, place them in cupcake pans, pour in the batter and viola...bite sized heaven. Well it wasn't that easy especially since I am no baker. It's a science, and I really didn't do that well in chemistry. Even the cutting of banana leaves took a delicate hand. But after some trial and mostly error, I think my attempt at baking went well.
Mama Honey's Bibingka
Ingredients for 2 dozen cupcakes
1 cup of bisquick mix
1/2 cup of rice flour (not Mochiko Sweet rice flour. I used Bob's Red Mill unsweetened stone ground)
3 tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
1 1/4 cup of milk
1/2 cup of grated cheese
1/2 bar of unsalted butter
tsp cream cheese per cupcake
2 salted eggs chopped
Mix bisquick, rice flour, baking powder and sugar in a mixing bowl until smooth and consistent texture. Now mix in eggs 1 at a time. Add your melted butter followed by your grated cheese. Continue to mix until smooth.
Next, scoop into individual banana leaf cups. Before baking put your salted egg, if desired and cream cheese on top. Bake in your preheated oven at 375 degrees and bake for 20 minutes.
These bake faster than normal due to their size and my mom's original recipe calls for mini pie pans for 30 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes then take the cupcakes and place on a cooling rack.
You can serve these guys as is or finish them with cream cheese frosting. If you do, cut back on the powdered sugar to reduce the sweetness.
You never get it right on your first try, and I'll have to refine my banana leaf cutting skills. Try it with Mochiko if you prefer. Remember, it's all about sharing, and making things better. I hope we can all get on board this notion of a The Universal Guide to Philippine Cuisine. I believe that it will only make our food better and more consistent, and also build a community of great Filipino food lovers. I just wanted to say thank you to my mom for sharing her recipe with me. Also, thanks to all of you who take your time to follow my Filipino food adventures. Salamat.