This is the kind of food that I consider, “when-the-craving-hits”. It reminds me of my childhood… my province…my lolas . This along with nilupak, sinukmani, ginataang malagkit at munggong pula were the homemade merienda delicacies my maternal Grandmother would make for her apos. I love it best when it’s piping hot (yung nakakapaso) and laden with lots of saba (cooking bananas) and tiny sago (tapioca pearls). It’s an afternoon snack favorite, but I’d gladly eat it for breakfast.
These are not expensive and what I would include in my list of simple joys—together with arroz caldo (rice-chicken porridge) and taho (soya milk custard). The trick I believe is in the coconut cream—which must be substantial to yield a creamy and flavorful concoction and a couple of stalks of pandan, for flavor and fragrance.
Take the word halo-halo to heart. Throw in a mix of tubers of different colors. The flesh of sweet potatoes comes in at least 3 colors- light yellow, orange and light purple. Throw in gabi (taro), for good measure.
Ginataang halo-halo is hearty and yet one bowl is not enough! Second servings are sure to happen.
- 4 cups assorted root crops/tubers: kamote, kamoteng kahoy, gabi (sweet potato, cassava, taro cut into cubes)
- (about ½ to ¾ inch cubes)
- 1 c saba or cooking bananas, cubed
- ½ c small sago or tapioca pearls
- 1 cup Bilo-bilo or glutinous rice balls
- 2 stalks pandan, tied into a knot
- Sugar to taste
- 2-3 coconuts, freshly grated. First press will approximately yield you at least 1 ½ cups (and that’s good). Add 2 cups warm water to yield a second press. Finally, add 4 cups warm water to yield a third press. (The liquid here will appear cloudy) *
Cook’s Tip: If you bought dried sago, soak them in water for 1 hour. Squeeze excess liquid.
Another cook’s tip: Pandan when raw can be quite stiff, so tie it into a knot before dropping into the pot. If it unravels while cooking, it’s ok.
© 2012, Kitchen Kitchie Koo. All rights reserved.