By Request


Wednesday, February 20, 2002

Simple Filipino desserts
make airy, casual treats

Mamon, a Filipino sponge-cake, is a good choice if you're baking a cake from scratch for the first time.

Once you get ahold of the cake flour and separate the six eggs, you'll find it's not much harder than a Pillsbury mix. Plus you can compare your results to a professional mamon -- say, from Golden Coin.

Arlene Mortera called looking for a mamon recipe. This is a version adapted from one found on the Web site,, which is a sort of catch-all place on the Internet for Filipino cultural news and notes. Dozens of recipes are catalogued here.


1 cup cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 eggs, separated
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease muffin cups, or line with paper baking cups. Use a pan for large muffins, if available, or the standard cupcake size.

Sift together cake flour and baking powder; set aside.

Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until very foamy, but not stiff. While continuing to beat add: sugar, gradually, then vanilla and oil, then egg yolks, one at a time, then the flour and baking powder.

Fill muffin cups with batter, about 2/3 full. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until a pick inserted in the center of a cake comes out clean. Makes 24 standard-sized cupcakes.

While we're on the subject of Filipino desserts, here is a recipe for puto, or rice muffins, included because it's simple, interesting and because when I brought the mamon to the newsroom for taste-testing, a couple people said, "What, no puto?"


"The Food of the Philippines: Authentic Recipes from the Pearl of the Orient" by Reynaldo Alejandro (Periplus Editions, 1999)

2 cups mochiko (rice flour)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup white sugar
2 cups coconut milk
1 teaspoon anise seeds (optional)
1 cup grated coconut (or coconut flakes)

Sift mochiko, salt, baking powder and sugar together. Add coconut milk to sifted ingredients and blend until smooth. Add anise seeds. Mix thoroughly.

Fill greased muffin pans 2/3 full. Cook in a steamer 30 minutes, or until a pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve hot, topped with grated coconut or butter.

Nutritional information unavailable.

Food Stuffs: Morsels

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Asterisk (*) after nutritional analyses in the
Body & Soul section indicates calculations by
Joannie Dobbs of Exploring New Concepts,
a nutritional consulting firm.

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