Homegrown best describes today’s discoveries of edible treats. They were first lovingly prepared by home cooks and bakers for their families. With practice, the household specialties evolved into commercial products that many people enjoy.
Matsang (also known as zongzi in Mandarin), for instance, was traditionally served at the Dragon Boat Festival. Today, it is eaten throughout the year and at any time of the day.
Jenny Co used to make homemade matsang until friends egged her to produce it in commercial quantities. Thus, Megabites Matsang was born.
The sticky rice dumplings are a Co family staple that Jenny improved on by adding all her favorite ingredients. She never skimps and utilizes only premium ingredients, especially for the exquisite filling.
The tiny, pyramid-shaped delicacies are hand-wrapped in bamboo leaves with great precision. Once unwrapped, the matsang is a multisensoral experience: aromatic, visually appealing, phenomenally tasty.
The high-quality, long-grained, sweet sticky rice stays whole. Though soft, the grains don’t turn to mush. The filling consists of Japanese dried scallops, Taiwan shiitake, Chinese sausage, premium pork belly, chicken and chestnuts. The slew of quality ingredients sets Megabites apart from the rest. One bite and your palate will relish a complex mix of flavors, harmoniously blended yet individually distinct. Unlike other matsang, this tastes with no aftertaste.
Coming soon, according to Co, is abalone matsang.
Tel.: 0908-8888887, 0932-8888887
Imagine a brownie as thin as lengua de gato in disc form. Mind you, the thickness and size of these crisps are uniform. In taste, it is all you want a brownie to be—buttery, chocolaty and sweet.
What makes this special is that you have that much-coveted “toasted brownie edge” taste in every crunchy bite.
The thins are created by Fides Filart, a nurse-turned-baker and mother of two. She first ventured into baking at a young age when she successfully recreated her aunt’s coconut macaroon recipe on her first attempt. Filart continues to pursue her passion and is working toward expanding her home-based business called Cake Bites. She said she feels fulfilled as wife, mother and businesswoman.
Upside-down pineapple cake
I have seen this cake go through a process of revisions. Finally, Dianne Ramos has created an honest-to-goodness upside-down cake that brings great delight.
Ramos’ golden butter cake is flavored with pineapple juice, made rich with a splash of milk. The little cakes are brushed generously with rum-spiked brown butter and caramel glaze, and adorned with pineapple rings and maraschino cherries.
She says her cake is a top-selling “retro favorite.”
There is a cheese cupcake from my youth that remains in my memory. It was not at all fancy, but rather simple with a cake-like consistency—milky, buttery and cheesy. The right description is malinamnam or tasty.
Somehow that cheese cupcake of old has been revived by Jenny Dy’s own cheese cupcake. It comes without fanfare yet it has that “lovingly baked by mom for kids” appeal. It evokes the mystique of home-baked goods—pleasant and comfortingly delicious.
Dy is a stay-at-home mother of three, but has become quite popular among foodies for her moist coconut macaroons. Like her first creation, her cheese cupcakes are sweetened just right and pair perfectly with coffee or tea.