Budbud pilit is a Filipino delicacy that is a favorite of mine. I could eat five pieces in one sitting, which is a bit strange because there’s really nothing special about it. It’s basically just sticky rice cooked in coconut milk and wrapped in banana leaves. I don’t even dig rice much unless it’s basmati served with Indian dishes.
This delicacy is so easy to prepare. The biggest challenge, especially if you live in Prague, is finding some banana leaves. Fortunately, this Asian shop along Francouzka street had them when my husband dropped by there last Wednesday. Funny how these leaves, which we tend to ignore in the Philippines, cost €4.50/ pack here.
Here’s a recipe I found online. There are several recipes scattered here and there but I chose the easiest and tweaked it a bit:
- 3 cups sticky rice
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 liter coconut milk
- 1 small piece crushed ginger
- wilted banana leaves
1. Wash sticky rice well. Cook with coconut milk, sugar and crushed ginger in a wok. Stir constantly.
2. When the mixture is almost dry, reduce or turn off the heat and cover with banana leaves. Let cool.
3. Take 2 spoonfuls of cooked sticky rice and wrap it with wilted banana leaves. Tie in pairs.
4. Steam covered for at least 30 minutes in a big pot. I steamed mine for an hour to make sure whatever germs that clung to the banana leaves even after washing and wilting would surely die a painful death. Heh.
5. And finally, my first batch of budbud pilit is ready!
It’s traditionally served with hot chocolates and/or ripe mangoes but I’m not into hot chocolates and mangoes in this part of the globe are ridiculously expensive. So I had mine with the ever-present companion — green tea.
I’ve already devoured three pieces as of this writing. My husband tried one and I swear I could hear his mind wondering what’s so special about it when it’s just sweet rice. Really there’s nothing much, except for me each bite brings a lot of happy memories.
And that, my dearest, is hard to top. 😀