Wednesday, April 9, 2008

For the Sweet Tooth: Cebu's Delicacies

If you are the type of person who has a sweet tooth, then Cebu, with its very unique, sweet and delightful delicacies, can also be the perfect place for you.


Needless to say, there are lots of foods Cebu is famous for. There is the pusô, lechon, danggit, nukos, and a lot more. But aside from those mentioned, there are also some sweets any balikbayan or foreign tourist will surely want to take home for pasalubong.


Let me list down some of the most-patronized and most-bought delicacies here in the province of Cebu. But remember, the list does not end there!


Otap. It is an oval-shaped biscuit. The ingredients of which are flour, sugar, shortening and coconut. Its sweet taste is due to the sprinkled sugar. Upon eating, it is a bit messy because a portion of the biscuit flies to the floor due to its light mass. So once you bite a piece of otap, make sure you put your one hand below your chin so you can catch the falling portions and sugar and will not make your eating messy. But the messy thing is a part of the whole otap experience. You can buy some in Titay's or in Shamrock.


Masareal. It is a famous Cebuano delicacy that traces its origins in Mandaue, Cebu. It is most usually served in rectangular bars and is wrapped with paper. The widely loved masareal is made of finely ground peanuts mixed with sugar syrup. One famous brand is Didang's Masareal.


Bibingka.  Rice cakes, or bibingka, which is made from ground regular rice, has its own Mandaue style. It is rich in coconut and is basically made of eggs, sugar, all-purpose flour, baking powder, melted margarine, and grated cheese. The rice cake is steamed. Some who are not familiar with the bibingka remember it as white rice cakes with unusual purple dots sprinkled onto the top. New recipes are also being introduced, with the addition of condensed milk as ingredient to make bibingka more pleasing to anyone's taste.


Salvaro. It is basically coconut crackers on flat oval and very thin biscuits. It is wafer-thin and very crispy. It has a unique taste due to its coconut flavor. The salvaro's ingredients include shredded coconut, sodium bicarbonate, shortening, enriched wheat flour, and sugar. Famous brands are Pinky's Salvaro and Gene's Salvaro de Cebu.

Alan Angelo Llevares

Ampao. Carcar City in Cebu boasts of its very famous ampao. This is Cebu's version of rice crispies. Sprinkled with peanuts, ampao is white, crunchy and sweet. Ampao is rectangular and thick.


Torta. If you're in for a new taste of torta, then try one from Argao, Cebu. Instead of the common yeast, what is used instead is the tuba, or fermented coconut wine. It is a cupcake-like pastry, large and sweet. It is usually made from flour poured in the tuba and mixed with salt. The sugar and egg yolks are added and with the oil, the pan is lined with paper and then oil or butter is greased. As opposed to the modern type of ovens, the Cebu torta is cooked in a clay furnace. It is also sometimes anise-flavored.  You may eat torta as a snack or as an addition to rice.

Dried Mango. From the name itself, it is mango that is sun dried and ripe. But, well, Cebu's dried mango is not your usual and ordinary dried mango. Cebu's dried mango is most famous for its distinctive taste that will surely leave you craving for more. Cebu's mangoes have a sweet yet sour taste.  The ripe dried mangoes are also packed perfect for snacks.


Rosquillos. These are ring cookies. Cebu is proud to have the best export quality rosquillos in the entire Philippines. These cookies are light and delicious. They are rings that are flavored with anise and may also be with wine. Rosquillos is usually made from dough. The shape also makes it more interesting for kids.


There you have it, guys! Here's a short list of things you might want to take home and enjoy along with your loved ones. I have made your shopping and choosing easy by making a short list of your pasalubong. But remember, it will always be best if you try them all yourself and see what delights you most and what fits most your taste buds. At the end of the day, you will choose what suits you best, not what others recommend for you. So whenever you have the chance, don't waste it. Try and buy!


chloe said...

try Mana Acion's masareal. tastes so much better than Didang's. order from them directly @ (32) 4207819 / (906) 4033390

Anonymous said...

De Luxe Hopia Bakery a must try.

They also have other delicacies especially there hopia. Loved it. I always buy or even asked others to bring here in the US.

they are located near USJR magallanes infront of Cebu Bazaar. Contact no. 256-0885

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