After the launch of Inquirer Lifestyle’s “Best Desserts 5” book, written by dear friend and colleague Vangie Baga Reyes, I’m inspired to find new sweet treats.
Browsing through the book piqued my curiosity as there were many desserts that delighted my eye and, by their descriptions, whetted my appetite. I will definitely try them all—one at a time.
Here then are my new discoveries:
I’ve featured Patricia Gotohio’s Mother’s Day Cupcakes that taste as phenomenal as they look—moist chocolate cupcakes with decadent chocolate frosting and light, hand-piped vanilla buttercream flowers.
I just tried her Ube Cake. Oh, my! It’s a cross between a mousse, a soft ice cream cake and a feather-light, melt-in-your-mouth chiffon.
The one I had was a birthday cake version that I ordered for my sister Cristy’s surprise party. I never outgrew my penchant for icing flowers, be it made with royal or buttercream icing. I think all cakes taste better with icing flowers!
According to Patricia, the Ube Cake is a revised version of her mom Josie’s recipe.
“Mom has a way of making her cakes light,” she said. “I merely improved on it.”
For orders: 0917-7915985
There aren’t many cakes that taste as good even after five days. See, I forgot that I had a slice of Big Al’s Decadent Chocolate Cake tucked somewhere in my fridge for that long. To my surprise, it still tasted fresh!
Big Al’s arose from Joy del Rosario’s love for baking. As a hobbyist, she made brownies, food for the gods and the like.
After her stint in the corporate world, Joy focused on being a mother. It was during this time that she developed Big Al’s Decadent Chocolate Cake.
I love this cake for its simplicity. It is chocolaty yet does not overwhelm. I’m told that it’s slathered with a special ganache made of her own mix of chocolates.
For orders: bit.ly/bigalsorder
Korean rice cakes
While judging the Korean Cultural Center’s Global Taste of Korea competition at the LPU Culinary Institute on June 15, I feasted on rice cakes made by Korean food expert Lily Min.
I enjoyed her Samsaek Gyeongdan—fine, soft and yet with a bite that makes rice cakes such a delight to eat.
Samsaek Gyeongdan is a type of Korean rice cake. Sam is Korean for three, saek means color. Samsaek Gyeongdan are, therefore, tricolored rice cake balls.
Working with Lily has inspired me to delve and experiment on perfecting the art of making rice cakes. Here is her delicious recipe:
4 c glutinous rice powder
2 tbsp sugar
4 tbsp boiling water
½ c cornstarch
½ c bean paste (can be bought locally in Chinese stores: mooncake filling)
¼ c black sesame powder
¼ c roasted bean powder
¼ c mugwort powder or malunggay powder
Combine glutinous rice powder with sugar in a bowl. Add hot boiling water 1 tbsp at a time while mixing.
Turn out dough and knead by hand. Divide to make balls that are 1 inch in diameter.
If stuffing: Make a hole in the middle with your thumb and put the bean paste and pine nut in the middle. Seal edges.
Coat balls in cornstarch. Cook in boiling water. When cooked, the rice cakes will float to the surface.
Rinse balls in cold water and drain them. Divide balls into three and roll each portion in one of the three powders.
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