Saturday, April 03, 2010

Rice Puto

I would have said "Putong Puti" on the title, but because I used several flavorings to come up with bite-size puto to bring tomorrow to my SIL's for Easter celebration, these mini-puto have pastel colors,and will be the right way to Filipinize Easter, I would say!

I used rice flour (to save time), and added coconut milk instead of plain water just because I love the flavor imparted by it. I also added fresh pandan leaves to the boiling water for additional flavor.

My kids liked them, tasting each and seeing which flavor they liked best. Hubby was likewise delighted.

I also experimented with using additional tapioca starch (added 1 tsp to 1 tbsp to one of the 4 colors) to see whether it would help prevent the "eruption"; I also tried to lessen the heat as soon as I placed the bamboo steamer, so as not to make "gulat" and create that erupted look. Not that I don't like the erupted top; I was just wondering how some puto vendors manage not to have any on theirs. These seem effective, and tapioca subtly changes the consistency to make it a little bit chewier (almost rubber-like, but not tough, whereas pure rice would result to a more crumbly texture, especially if batter is not thin enough, or if rice did not soak long enough).

I will have to make special mention of MaMely of PinoyAmericanRecipes for the puto molds and the wonderful Pinoy flavorings she sent to me. Thanks, MaMely!

1 package (16 oz or 1 lb) rice flour (regular, red writings on package)
1-1/2 cup water
1 can (14 oz or 13.5 oz) premium coconut milk (unsweetened, first pressing)
1-1/2 cup sugar
a dash or two of salt
1 tbsp baking powder
few drops of McCormick flavorings (langka, ube, pandan)

tapioca starch (1 tbsp for the whole batch, or 1 tsp for each after dividing)
pandan leaves for the boiling water


In a plastic container, blend rice flour with water very well. Cover and let rest in room temp overnight.

Next morning, add everything else except flavorings and mix very well until smooth. Batter will be very very thin. Do not be tempted to add any more flour.

Prepare water for steaming. Add pandan leaves if desired.

Divide batter into 4. Add a few drops of the flavorings to 3, leaving one white, so you end up with 4 different colors. You may add tapioca (1 tsp each) to each of these, or try one with tapioca and see if you like the result. If you don't, leave the rest alone.

Lay the puto molds on top of cloth lining as shown (I use the ones in the photo below; I bought it from Walmart, where the housekeeping/building stuff are). Pour the batter almost to the brim of the molds. When water is briskly boiling, steam the puto and time for 10 minutes for these bite-size puto (muffin size will probably take 15-20 minutes). If using metal pan, line the lid also with dry cloth to absorb moisture and prevent condensation. Do not steam the puto too long that the excess moisture gets absorbed by the cooked puto that might result to sogginess. In trying to figure out the right steaming time for your size of puto, try a few, steam for about 10 minutes, try it (or break in half to see the middle), before you proceed with the rest of the batter.

Once done, remove right away from the mold and cool on wire rack so excess moisture evaporates. These puto molds easily releases the puto; I just had to slip the tip of a toothpick at one side, the gently pull it out and drop onto the cooling rack. Store (what you will not eat right away) in airtight container when cooled completely.


sharon said...

I love the look of your puto. Oh yes, what would do the Pinoy do without his puto? I'm going to try your recipe. I make puto using the White King Mix which is ok, but nothing to write home about. Your recipe looks more adventurous. I don't have those tiny molds, but can use my small muffin pan. And my steamer - a metal one - should come in handy.
I hope I can duplicate the look of your puto!

Luz said...

Hi Manang,
Happy Easter to you and your family!I have a question on your rice flour... Do you really need to soak it overnight?Please advise.Thanks.

Manang said...

Hi Sharon,
I think this recipe is almost as simple as having a mix, if you have the ingredients in your pantry anyway. The flavorings are just to make it more interesting. Plain still tastes good otherwise.

At least 6 hrs soaking time would be ideal. If not, maybe try about an hour to two hours. I think the soaking makes it smoother (I would think if you do not soak, the outcome might be crumbly, but go ahead and try if you will like it anyway). You know how the lumpiang sariwa batter, if left in the fridge for a while before cooking, makes the crepe more intact?...that's the create soaking makes...almost like the process of developing gluten, although this has not gluten because is has no wheat.

Nina said...

i usually use all-purpose flour for my puto 'coz that's the usual recipe found in the net/book. This must be a better version as the traditional puto sold in palengke is made from galapong, which I really love :)

Anonymous said...

hi manang!

when you said slightly chewy puto with the tapioca flour, kapareho ba ng puto calasiao yung consistency niya? i love the texture of puto calasio kasi


Tangled Noodle said...

I have plenty of cookbook on Filipino cuisine but I know that you will always have the best and most straightforward recipes! This is fantastic - I also make puto only from the White King mix but would prefer to do it from scratch. Thank you for this! I will make putong puti for my next batch of dinuguan for my husband. 8-)

Manang said...

Nina, it must be better...the thing is, if I have to make puto from scratch (instead of the white cake mix I used before), I would opt for a non-all purpose flour recipe, since we all know puto is made from rice. The major thing that kept me from making puto from rice prior to this was, I was afraid the result would be the puto that I disliked back in the Philippines...the kind that was too crumbly, and leaves a certain unpleasant film inside the mouth after biting. This one does not have that afterfeel. I don't know if the coconut milk (with its oil component) did the trick, but I loved the result.

ria, I have not had puto calasiao, so I have no idea whether this comes close and I don't have a basis for comparison. You can try this recipe and you tell me if it is. You can also try to modify and see what you have to do to make it like puto calasiao.

TN, That was some big expectations from me! Haha! I am not sure if my recipes are the best, but I know they work for me, and most of them work for a lot of my readers as well. I am sure you will like this one too.

Joy said...

I got to try it with rice flour, I normally use grounded rice but I'm not consistant.

Luz said...

I tried to make puto with online recipes using rice flour and coconut milk without soaking it.I'm sure it will be better if I will do your way.Thanks again.

Manang said...

I hope you will like the outcome as much as we did!

Lannie said...

Manang, thanks for this recipe! When I'm in Manila one of my first stops is... Goldilocks! for the puto. I'll try this at home here. I sure hope I can find real pandan leaves.

Anonymous said...

manang can i use whole milk instead of coconut milk?

Anonymous said...

thanks manang, i'll try it today!

Luz said...

Hi Manang,I tried your rice puto ,I like the outcome,except I had a erupted top :).I did not have tapioca starch on that time. Does it really
work for you?I can see your puto meron ding biyak
sa ibabaw.Please advise.Thanks.

josephine said...

Hi Manang - These look exactly like the puto I miss back home. I'd love to try your recipe. Where did you get your puto molds. Thanks

t said...

Hi, this is Thelma. I'm finally trying this recipe. My rice flour is soaking, meanwhile, I'll link this to my facebook for easy reference later. I'm not using the optional tapioca since I don't mind the erupted look on top as long as they don't explode out of the puto pans(it happened to me), in fact, that's how I remember puto back home. I hope I'll succeed this time. I have guinea pigs to feed tomorrow. Heck, they ate my puto before, even if the consistency and form were disastrous.

Anonymous said...

Do you mean 1.5 cups in your ingredients? I just want to make sure I can assume it's really one and a half cups by reading 1-1/2.

Joyce Leybag said...

Does anyone know where can I buy tapioca flour?

Anonymous said...

Same question here.

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