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Ginataang bilo-bilo recipe to remind us what god-tier Pinoy merienda should be like

Ginataang bilo-bilo recipe to remind us what god-tier Pinoy merienda should be like

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I am an unapologetic denier of the rice flour balls in ginataang bilo-bilo. Yes, I know effort goes into rolling them out ever so tenderly to create perfect orbs that are bite-sized enough and that cooks at the same time the whole thing is ready.

But hear me out: what I like most in a mug/bowl/glass of bilo-bilo is the sago and the creamy sauce/soup with crushed up parts of fruit (especially kamote) in there from a little overcooking. Yes, I skip the bilo-bilo. Sue me!

 

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While we can agree on the universal comfort this merienda brings, people still maintain their preferences for one component over the other (I know this because we did a poll on this on Instagram. Oh yes, we love to stir the pot—if only to pick our bilo-bilo bias/es).

For Cereb Gregorio, co-owner of Quezon City’s hidden lunch oasis Gubat,  it is not about settling. Why choose among existing ingredients when you can add more? Earlier this year, Gubat debuted a literally “greener” take on ginataan, this time tinged with pandan. Soon, another version will be introduced, a sneak peek of which Cereb sharedon our Comfort Kitchen series.

 

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No, there will be no purple ube version—please give the yam a rest! Instead, Cereb adds sweet corn kernel presumably for a pop of color but also to add a different flavor to the mix. 

 

Ginataang bilo-bilo

Ingredients

Glutinous rice flour
Langka, shredded
Sweet corn, shucked
Saba, sliced
Coconut milk
Tapioca, cooked
Light brown sugar
Water

Procedure

  1. Start by making the bilo-bilo (rice balls). Mix glutinous rice flour with water until it’s doughy. Flour the surface you’ll put the balls on. Roll the dough into small balls with your hands
  2. In a pot, pour the coconut milk then add sugar. Stir and let simmer gently
  3. Add the corn, saba, langka and sago (tapioca pearls). Gently mix and wait until it comes to a slow boil
  4. Drop the rice flour balls into the pot, combine with the rest of the ingredients then cover. Let cook on low heat for a few more minutes until the bilo-bilo is cooked through.
  5. Serve and enjoy!

 

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Read more:

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Palapa is the Maranao condiment you need to spice up scrambled eggs

Writer: CHRISTIAN SAN JOSE
PHOTOGRAPHY TAMMY DAVID

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