Tasty Filipino Pastries You Should Know About

The list of desserts and pastries in many Filipino restaurants is not that extensive, but people who have tried them still appreciate the full flavor and texture of the traditional dishes. Whether you are a student taking an online baking course or just want to learn about different pastries from other cultures, these Filipino confectionery treats are a must-have in your recipe book.

Pan de Sal
This traditional bread of the Philippines is semi-sweet and only made with eggs, flour, salt, sugar and yeast. It has been part of traditional Filipino breakfasts since the 16th century and is best when served fresh and warm. Although you can eat the bread plain, many Filipinos like to fill it with different types of cheeses, coconut jam, sardines, fried eggs, peanut butter or some kind of cooked meat. Kids love eating pan de sal with a cup of hot chocolate.

One of the most widely recognized Filipino pastries is siopao. It is essentially a round steamed bun filled with different types of protein such as pork, beef, shrimp or salted egg. It is usually flavored with sweet or savory sauces. Siopao originated in China where it is called baozi and also has a cousin in Thailand called salapao.

A sweet, light pastry found at many Filipino birthday parties, graduations and other celebratory events, puto is one of those treats that you can’t resist. It’s basically a small rice cake or muffin topped with either coconut, shredded cheese or a little bit of butter.

This richly flavored dessert is a traditional Filipino rice pudding but has its roots in Goa. It has a light, fluffy texture and is often served with a little coconut and butter on top.

Similar to the Latino empanada, the ensaymada is a kind of brioche that is a popular item on many menus in Filipino restaurants. The bread is rounded and flavored with multiple cheeses with a bit of sugar sprinkled on top. While some people like their ensaymada simple, you can find ones that are filled with butter cream, purple yam, ham, beef, salted eggs, and pure coconut meat.

Arguably the most famous of all Filipino treats, hopia can be found in international pastry shops around the world. It is a staple of Filipino celebrations and casual get-togethers, and is often given as a gift during special occasions. Hopia is essentially a round, bean filled pastry. It has many different varieties including hopiang mungo which is filled with mung beans and hopiang ube, which is filled with a paste of purple yam.

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