A Genius Tip for Homemade Bibingka in NY Times

Here's how Nicole Ponseca, New York-based Filipina restaurateur, gets a good crust on bibingka!


 

Nicole Ponseca is the woman behind Maharlika and Jeepney-two Filipino restaurants in New York that serve classic Filipino comfort dishes like sizzling sisig, arroz caldo, and a Pinoy Christmas season essential: bibingka!

 

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Bibingka is a rice cake that is traditionally cooked over coals, in banana leaves, and in a very hot clay oven. This lets the cake rise despite the glutinous rice flour weighing it down, and gives the cake a good crust underneath. Locals love to top their bibingka with large knobs of butter, shaved fresh coconut, salted egg slices or itlog na maalat, and a small sprinkle of sugar.  

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Because many home cooks do not have the traditional clay oven at home, it may be difficult to replicate the exact texture of a good bibingka. Nicole Ponseca's bibingka recipe, which was recently featured in the New York Times, has genius tip for making bibingka at home: use a cast-iron skillet! This helps the cake become toasty and crusty like it would in a clay oven.

 

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