I was organizing my pantry today, when I came across a tub of rice flour. What to do with it? Apparently, not a lot. Unlike sweet rice flour, there doesn’t seem to be many recipes that use rice flour. The only one I can find in The Philippine Cookbook (by Reynaldo Alejandro) is Putong Puti (Rice Muffins). I had most of the ingredients on hand, so I figured why not? I was up for a bit of a cooking adventure.
So here’s the original recipe:
Putong Puti (Rice Muffins)
2 cups rice flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups coconut milk
1 teaspoon anise seeds
1 cup grated coconut
Sift first four ingredients together. In a mixing bowl, add coconut milk to sifted ingredients and blend well to make a smooth mixture. Add anise seeds. Mix and blend thoroughly and fill greased muffin pans 2/3 full. Cook in a steamer for 30 minutes. Test for doneness. Muffins are done when toothpick or cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Serve topped with grated coconut. Serves 4.
I didn’t have anise seed or grated coconut handy, so I just omitted those. Oh, and my muffin pans won’t fit in my steamer. So after I filled the pans, I placed them in a baking pan with about an inch of water, covered them lightly with foil, and baked at 400C for almost an hour. I had some batter left over, so I put that in a ceramic bowl and steamed it for 40 minutes total. The photo above is the steamed puto, and those that were baked are below:
They taste the same (obviously, haha). Next time, I’ll use less sugar because this turned out sweeter that I’d like. The steamed puto is fluffier, with the mounded top beautifully split in the center. I should tell you that the bowl I used for the steamed version is about 5 inches across, so that’s one humongous puto.
This is a really easy recipe to try. If you have a steamer, use that, even if you have to make the puto in ramekin bowls. But if not, and you just want to satisfy a craving, baking in the oven would suffice. A simple variation to this would be to top them with a piece of cheese or salted egg.
For other puto variations, check out my post listing some puto recipes from around the web.
images from personal collection © 2008 M. Macalincag