Tuesday, August 28, 2007

SHF #34 & Breakfast #13: Carabao’s Milk Champorado with Cocojam and Pili Nuts

title
On the heels of my last post, after waxing lyrical about our national love affair with rice for breakfast, I had to come back to tell you this: We don’t just have it with egg and meat/fish. And we don’t just have it savory.

We also have it sweet and with chocolate.

This is called champorado and is our version of chocolate rice pudding. It’s traditionally eaten at breakfast time, sometimes with a side of dried, salted fish. It may seem strange to the uninitiated to have chocolate rice pudding with dried fish. I can’t actually comment because I haven’t tried the combination, but rest assured that if I do I will report back here. Until then, it’s enough for me that eating chocolate for breakfast figures into my culture and I’m more than grateful for that :)

There are loads of champorado mixes available at the supermarkets but I decided to make it from scratch using the loot C had brought back for me from his business trip to Naga City. First I used the native tablea (chocolate tablets made of local crushed cacao) as my chocolate flavoring, a more traditional ingredient than the commonly used cocoa powder that you find in a lot of champorado today. Then, since chocolate and coconut are a popular pairing, I thought of topping the champorado with some of the coconut jam with pili nuts and sprinkling a few candied pili nuts over the whole mess. Finally, instead of making the champorado with water as it is typically done, I decided to use milk, and not just any milk, carabao’s milk. Carabao’s milk has a higher fat content than cow’s milk, making it richer and creamier, and upping the ante for milk-based puddings and desserts.

Carabao’s Milk Champorado with Cocojam and Pili Nuts
  • ½ cup malagkit rice (this is our local glutinous rice which we use for sticky rice sweets, I think rice you would use for risotto would work as well, although I’m not certain as I haven’t tried that yet)
  • 2-3 cups carabao’s milk (start with 2, then add if the mixture becomes too dry for your tastes)
  • 4 tablea (just under an ounce each)

- Place the 2 cups milk and the rice in a saucepan and cook until rice is almost done, stirring regularly.
- In another smaller saucepan, melt tablea in some of the extra milk.
- When rice feel almost done, add chocolate mixture and keep stirring until rice is soft, adding more milk when necessary (this will depend on how soupy or sticky you want it…I like it really thick)
- Place cooked champorado in small bowls and top each with some coco jam (to taste) and candied pili nuts.
- Serves 4.

I don’t add any sugar in this recipe because the coco jam is very sweet (so please practice restraint when adding it…unlike me). Also, when I say “place in small bowls”, I do mean small bowls, this is very rich and I could only finish half of the serving you see in the photo above. You can use cocoa powder instead of the tablea (I’ve consumed many a champorado using cocoa) but the tablea adds a certain rustic grittiness that I like, the chocolate being more bitter and grainy. The carabao’s milk makes this incredibly rich and creamy.

This is amazingly comforting during our rainy/wet season, not only because it is rich, sweet, and hearty, but also because it brings back so many childhood memories. My paternal grandmother use to make this all the time (albeit the regular way and not with carabao’s milk) and I used to look forward to it every time I visited. Now that I'm older, comforting childhood favorites like this are sometimes forgotten in the face of more sophisticated fare...but, I quickly realize as the rain beats steady on my grimy window, are no less needed.


back to school

UPDATE!!! -- I had been secretly hoping that I could submit this as my very first entry to the famed and highly acclaimed food blogging event, Sugar High Friday, but unfortunately I was late. However, I just recieved word from Johanna, this round's kind and generous host, that I was very much welcome to join...YAY! Johanna, The Passionate Cook, chose "Going Local!" as the theme and encouraged everyone to blog about local sweet stuff...hence my fervent wish to join this round...so I could toot the horn of my native champorado! :) Thank you Johanna! And thanks to Jennifer the Domestic Goddess for creating this event that celebrates sweetness! :)

42 comments:

Ipshi said...

I'm in my own sweet paradise right now imagining all of those flavors... u really have a way of describing things! this recipe reminds me so much of the kheer or rice pudding we make here in india. of course v dont use chocolate but guess what im gonna try soon enuf!?! thanks again for the experience~

Midge said...

that is so gorgeously decadent! the carabao's milk and the tablea are enough for me to forget my diet and indulge. thanks for this brilliant recipe, joey!

Amanda at Little Foodies said...

Yes please but hold the dried fish... We've just got back from 3 weeks away which included 10 wonderful days in Spain so it was yummy to catch up with your writings while I've been away. Your pictures are truly amazing too!

mtan said...

When you go to Baguio try Cafe by the Ruin's champorado with tuyo. It is a revelation. But it's not everyone's cup of tea.

Your champorado will definitely hit the spot these rainy days.

veron said...

Aaaah Joey! You are killing me! Champorado is my favorite especially when there is a raging typhoon otuside and there is no light. I shall try it with risotto rice and report back to you. Definitely with tuyo!

Hi Mtan! I'm formerly from Baguio! My family owns Tea House which is by the catheral steps. Small world.

christine said...

I LOVE champorado, but I like it plain too. Don't know if I'd like the addition of cocojam and pili nuts, but I can imagine loving it with carabao's milk! Substituting reg milk with carabao's milk propels the dish to a whole new dimension, no? :)

Marvin said...

This brought back memories of my grandfather who used to live with us here in the states. He would sometimes put hershey's cocoa powder on his rice, perhaps as a very quick version of champorado. I've never had or heard of champorado before, so I thought it was strange what my grandfather was doing. But now it all makes sense!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Ipshi! That kheer sounds interesting too :) What's in it? I got a lot of rice and a lot of time ;)

Hi Midge! You're welcome :) Substituting carabao's milk for the cow's milk in some recipes (mostly pudding type ones) really make a difference!

Hi Amanda! Good to have you back! I will be checking your site to read about all your adventures...I'm sure it was a blast! :)

Hi M! I can see how champorado with tuyo is not for everyone, but as I haven't tried it yet, I am definitely going to give it a few goes to see :) I'll remember that for next time I'm in Baguio, thanks for the tip!

Hi Veron! Yes, please let me know how it does with risotto rice...I gotta try this with tuyo soon! What a small world indeed...When I go to Baguio, I am definitely checking out the Tea House! :)

Hi Nens! The cocojam is really sweet, with such a distinct flavor, so I don't know if you'd enjoy it either since you like it plain…but the carabao’s milk makes it really creamy so I think you’d like that ;) Going to try carabao’s milk with my cuajada next!

Hi Marvin! It’s really good…just imagine chocolate rice pudding on a dark rainy morning ;) If you think that’s strange…in my post I mentioned that my grandma used to make it…well, she was the only one who made it (which is why I savored it so much!), my mom did not, so what my brother and I used to do sometimes was add Milo powder to oatmeal and say it was champorado!

Honeybee said...

Mmh, this looks good! I'm always amazed at how exotic and yet familiar the filipino dishes you write about are. This is a cuisine I'd definitely like to try one day! I'll try to recreate the champorado even though I will have to substitute many products.

Katrina said...

I remember being really grossed out when I first heard that in some provinces, people would pour their hot chocolate over their rice, then eat that with whatever the protein was for breakfast; and in other provinces, it was coffee they'd pour on their rice! I later realized it wasn't that strange when someone compared it to champorado. But the coffee-on-rice thing still makes me wince. I like my champorado (or oatmeal, for that matter) really thick, so watery rice doesn't sound attractive to me.

katiez said...

Rice pudding with chocolate, nuts, coconut....OMG, does that sound good! Dessert for breakfast! Perfect! I could do cashews... and some good Spanish dark drinking chocolate...

meganhahaha said...

Hello, hello! Champorado spells nostalgia for me as well. My paternal grandma would make a large batch and store some in the fridge. I love my champorado cold, hehe.

And I'll try this too since we always have pili nuts here (my parents are from Bicol).

More power to your blog, I always enjoy visiting! :D

Peabody said...

That looks super comforting!

Anh said...

Oh sweet rice treat for breaky. I love it!

I may have to break my morning laziness and make some.

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Gosh, please leave out the dried fish but I'd really love to try this with all your Extras! I might have to wait for lunch though! Gorgeous photo!!

Marketman said...

Your photos are sublime. And your increasing use of native or locally available delicacies is amazing!

Andy said...

Wow what a wonderful indulgence for breakfast. I Love it!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Honeybee! Thanks...you put it so well, I'd like to think Filipino cuisine is both exotic and familiar :) If you do give it a try let me know! :)

Hi Katrina! I like my champorado (and oatmeal) thick too :) In fact (and this may sounds really horrid) I used to put powdered milk (Birch Tree) on my champorado when I was a kid because I felt liquid milk would just dilute it. The most liquid thing I would add would be condensada :) A little bit more and I would be able to knead it!

Hi Katiez! It does sound like dessert for breakfast doesn’t it? :) Using cashews and Spanish dark drinking chocolate sounds great! In fact, I have both in my kitchen cabinet…thanks for the idea! :)

Hi Meganhahaha! Thanks for your kind words :) I can eat my champorado (and even oatmeal) cold too! I just swiped a spoonful from the fridge last night, hehehe :)

Hi Peabody! It is…especially when it’s raining and you’ve had a tough day :)

Hi Anh! You can make this the night or day before and just store it in the fridge…then heat it up the next morning with a little milk :)

Thanks Tanna! The dried fish isn’t for everyone…although I have yet to try the pairing :) Candied pili nuts are delicious though…I have a very hard time stopping once I start eating these!

Hi MM! Thank you so much! I don’t get to eat/prepare native things 100% of the time, but I do try to incorporate them whenever I can…after all, they are: 1. Delicious, 2. Readily available, 3. Value for money! :) I love a lot of our native culinary treats, dishes, and ingredients, and I feel there is still so much for me to discover…that’s one delectable journey :)

Hi Andy! It does seem like a wonderful indulgence doesn’t it? It is actually quite a breakfast standard here (without all the toppings I used)…but I definitely agree that it is an indulgence to have chocolate for breakfast, and we shouldn’t take it for granted :)

The Cooking Ninja said...

That certainly looks delicious. We have rice pudding in France - Usually my MIL makes it. I'll have to make it one day (I must summon my courage :p) and post it on my blog.

oggi said...

I eat champorado anytime of the day. If I have access to carabao's milk I might eat it all day! Or maybe make some fresh mozzarella cheese balls.;D

Belinda said...

Aha! Chocolate rice pudding for breakfast! Joey, you are coming up with the best breakfast suggestions lately, and are really doing your blog's name justice! :-) And your photography is always so stunningly done...I love visiting, and enjoy your writing just as much as the beautiful photos. :-)

tutubi said...

sarap naman nyan...
btw, do you know who invented the champorado? :P

Patricia Scarpin said...

Joey, I absolutely love rice pudding and you go and add chocolate?? I have got to try this!

thepassionatecook said...

champurrado i know from mexico... a rice drink with chocolate flavour, equally weird to the uninitiated. dried fish, though? not sure that'll be on my menu any time soon. rice pudding any day though! thanks for participating...

ChichaJo said...

Hi Cooking Ninja! Sounds like a nice MIL :) Go for it...it's like making risotto...kinda :)

Hi Oggi! I can eat it anytime also, hehe :) Hey, how do you make those mozarella balls? :)

Thank you so much Belinda for the sweet encouragment! :) My breakfasts posts petered off soon after I started this blog but now I really hope I can incorporate regular breakfast postings here :)

Hi Tutubi! Nope...do you? Please share :)

Hi Patricia! This is more common here than vanilla rice pudding or just plain milk rice pudding :) We also have a sticky rice snack flavored with coconut and unrefined sugar...mmmm!

Hi Johanna! I read your post on champurrado and I was actually thinking how nice it was that all around the world we have these "crossover" dishes that are done in different ways in different parts of the world :) I guess we all have more in common that we think :) Thanks for being a fab host! :)

Bearbrick Lover: said...

Naku, Kat and I should invite ourselves to your place for champorado on of these days! :-D

sha said...

you should try making ice cream w carabao milk
i

SteamyKitchen said...

I'm warning you. DO NOT show this to my husband or kids. They will think that it is what I will make them for bfast every morning...

ChichaJo said...

Anytime Bearbrick Lover! :) Just let me know :)

Hi Sha! I can just imagine how amazing that would be! (Another fateful sign for me to get an ice cream maker...)

Hi Jaden! Hahaha! I am sure breakfast at your place is a delicious riot :) Especially with your two cuties! :)

Sherra said...

Such a wonderful recipe for something that's usually done plain and simply. My son loves champorado for his bfast, with this new twist of yours, I'm sure he'll love it even more!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Sherra! Tha carabao's milk makes it super creamy :) Hope he likes it!

Tartelette said...

This looks fantastic! I am not sure to find carabao's milk here, would goat's milk be an ok substitute?

ChichaJo said...

Hi Helene! I use carabao's milk here because it has a higher fat content and makes this much more creamy...I'm not so sure about goat's milk, but if it is creamier then cow's milk then it should do fine :) Cow's milk would be ok as well...traditional champorado is made with water so you can see how much I have deviated when it comes to the creamy factor!

Cenk said...

I fell in love with that photo instantly. That is great food styling. You are very talented!

ChichaJo said...

Thanks so much Cenk! :)

637Admin said...

I remember having this every Saturday (in So Cal). My siblings and I would fight over who would get the last tuyo head. The dried fish by itself was something, but if you ate it with the creamy chocolatey rice, it took on a whole new flavor.

I need to make some this weekend. :)

ChichaJo said...

I have yet to try it with tuyo...but I will! :) My favorite part of the tuyo is the head...amazing flavor huh? :)

u8mypinkcookies said...

now this is something new. interesting! ;)

Coconut Oil Central said...

Now that's just perfect. I love champorado ever since I was a kid. I remember almost crying for some champorado during merienda time.

And coco jam. I love all things coconut. I believe coco jam is one of the reasons why I have lost quite a few teeth already.

Pili nuts! I can eat this one non-stop during a movie. Really. What a wonderful recipe idea.

Thanks,
Frederick
Coconut Oil Central

indu said...

A healthy yet luxurious breakfast! Delicious...

Where to buy coconut oil said...

Does one really need to worry about being on a "diet" if they are eating carabao's milk and rice pudding? Great recipe! Keep up the good work.

Divina Pe said...

Hi Joey, where did you buy your carabao's milk in Metro Manila? I guess I wasn't looking hard enough. I'll be going back to Cebu next Monday and hope that milk will just show up. Anyway, have a great trip.