Pinoy Pantry: Get to Know the Local Tablea

Turn your favorite Filipino pantry staples into culinary creations!

Get to know your Pinoy ingredients and turn your favorite Filipino pantry staples into culinary creations! If you have tablea chocolate sitting in your pantry (we know that you likely have them), a satisfying Pinoy merienda is only a few minutes away. Adjust these recipes to your liking: you don’t always need one to whip up something wonderful.



1 First things first: make a bittersweet chocolate syrup.


Tablea has a more earthy flavor profile than the usual dark chocolate. Boil down 1 cup water, 4 to 5 pieces tablea, and 1/3 cup brown sugar. Adjust the sweetness or bitterness to your liking by adding more sugar or tablea, and reduce the syrup to your desired consistency. It is delicious drizzled over waffles, ensaymada, and ice cream.



2 Freeze chocolate cubes.


Boil 1 cup of water and mix in 2 to 3 pieces of tablea to dissolve. Let cool, then place into an ice cube tray and freeze overnight. Use these chocolate cubes for your next iced coffee drink!



3 Make roasted chocolate nuts.


Blitz 5 pieces of tablea and 5 tablespoons muscovado sugar in a food processor until powdery. Set aside. Toast 1 cup of almonds, pecans, or hazelnuts in a skillet with 1 tablespoon of butter, tossing frequently to avoid uneven toasting. Toss toasted nuts in the tablea mixture, spread on a baking sheet, and cool to room temperature.  


Be proud to use a local ingredient in your next baking project: tablea makes brownies, cupcakes, and leche flan even better! 



Transform traditional tablea into a sauce you can drizzle over ice cream, spread inside sandwiches, or simply enjoy on its own.


Main image from Wikimedia

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