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Friday, March 16, 2012

Pandan Puto(Steamed Pandan Rice Cake)

Tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day. Though we don't celebrate it, my daughters insisted that we make something green that I can post here. So, that's what we did early morning yesterday. With our jammies still on, we made these pandan flavored Puto, and then ate them for breakfast.
In the Philippines, Puto refers to a kind of steamed rice cake that is usually served and eaten with butter or grated coconut, either for breakfast or snack. The traditional puto are made in big round shapes about 1 to 2 feet in diameter and 1.5 inch thick, which are then served or sold in diamond shaped slices. Because of its popularity, different versions of puto came out. The one that we usually make is more like the Puto Mamon version which makes use of ordinary flour instead of rice flour. This variety of puto is usually steamed in individual aluminum or plastic molds which come in different sizes ranging from morsel to cupcake size. It is also made with different colors and flavors, making it more fun to eat. The ones we made yesterday are pandan (a tropical plant which is widely used in Asia as a flavoring) flavored so we would achieve the green color we want.
Instead of a Meatles Friday recipe, let me share with you these green treats for St. Patrick's Day just as my daughters requested. Clarise and Cherlin love puto with cream cheese filling so that's the version I'm sharing with you. Hope you'll like it.

Makes 18 pcs. mini cupcake-sized puto
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ½ Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp pandan extract
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup evaporated milk
  • 1 egg
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, cubed into 18 pcs.
  • ½ cup freshly grated coconut, for topping

1. Lightly grease puto or cupcake molds with non-stick spray. Put 1 cube of cream cheese in each mold.
2. In a bowl, mix all purpose flour, baking powder and sugar. 
3. Slowly add and whisk pandan extract, butter, water, milk, and egg until smooth and well combined. 
4. Pour batter into prepared puto or cupcake molds. 
5. Put enough water in the steamer and bring to a boil over medium heat. Arrange molds in the steamer pans. Place cheesecloth in between each pan to avoid water drips.  Steam for 25 minutes. 
6. Remove from steamer and allow to cool down completely. Remove from molds. Transfer to a serving plate and serve.

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