Bulakan and Guiguinto , Bulacan province-Philippines
Enriquez Ancestral House
This is the last ancestral house that the group had visited and it is getting dark . Our driver is getting moody .
lobby of the main house with Katipunan flags and props used in the theater play
Mr.Vicente “Bong ” S. Enriquez -one of the descendants of the clan – welcomed the group to their ancestral house. He is also a well -known director , entrepreneur, author, writer and artist.
Mr. Jeremy Lord Dancil of VSE Production
We were treated to an early evening cultural presentation by members of local arts guild. They are continuously teaching young artists of the town the art of Balagtasan and Pagpuputong .
bouquet of flowers and crown
Pagpuputong or Coronasyon is tradition in several towns of Bulacan , where poetry , theater art are combined. They pay homage to a beautiful maiden or important person . It is presented in such way that crown or bouquet of flowers that are in bloom are given . It is like a coronation night for beauty pageant.
Ms. Rheeza Santiago- Hernandez
Ms Rheeza S. Hernandez or Reeza is one of the torch bearers of the famed culinary icon Mrs. Milagros S. Enriquez – She recalled that her aunt would always like to teach those interested in traditional cuisines and pastries of Bulacan , along with some nephews and grandchildren . Unlike other traditional and family heirloom cuisines which died out . Almost all of their heirloom cuisines and those cuisines that are favorites by our national heroes were preserve by their Tita Mila.
They are carefully pass thru their culinary books, demonstrations and actively being taught to those people who are interested .
Ms. Rheeza S.Hernandez together with Ms. Samantha Enriquez ( grand daughter ) of Mrs. Milagros Enriquez
Ms. Rheeza Hernandez gave the group a demonstration sample of 2 important heirloom desserts . Gurgurya ( Bulakan style ) , In Malolos -they spelled it Gorgoria or Gorgorya while in other parts they called them Golloria . These are often snail-shaped and firm pieces of dough that is also deep fried and coated with sugar syrup or just dredged in sugar flavored with kalumata leaves extract.
The said dessert in one of the favorite foods of the revolutionary forces, katipuneros and even Dr. Jose P. Rizal. Gurgurya can last up to a month without refrigeration.
According to Ms. Rheeza , Ms. Samantha and Mr. Vicente ” Bong ” Enriquez, There are several different varieties of the famed desserts just like Adobo, The only difference is that there are some ingredients that are substituted maybe due to availability or preference.
She also noted the spelling differences from place to place.
Gurgurya – Bulakan ( Enriquez version )
The recipe that they demonstrated is ideal for senior citizens , because it is not too sweet unlike the other varieties. Mr. Vicente Enriquez also told us that her mother thru her love and passion for traditional Bulacan cuisines have interviewed and done some research on traditional cuisines usually from old-folks from the province. However , there are still a lot of heirloom cuisines that were not shared by some.
Here are the Ingredients :
- 2 cups flour / all purpose flour
- 1 cup margarine ( ordinary margarine being sold in wet market )
- 4 tsps milk
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 tsps baking powder
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 4 tbsps water
- grated dayap rind (native lemon)
- 8 to 10 leaves of Kalumata leaves ( flavoring )
- 1 to 2 cup cooking oil ( vegetable oil )
Substitutions: One may add vanilla extract , cinnamon powder or chocolate powder , depending on their preference.
Kalumata leaves which is not common in Metro Manila and urban areas.
1.)Mix all ingredients together except sugar, water , kalumata leaves and dayap. Mix evenly. Mold dough and cut into small pieces.
2.) Press each dough into a fork and roll to form a shell shape.
3.) on a separate deep pan , try to put 1 to 2 cup of vegetable oil then try to deep fry the gurgurya dough until golden-red. Set aside.
4.) Boil sugar and water until thick. Add in grated dayap rind .
5.) On a separate pot , Try to put 1 to 1/2 cup of water to a boiling point then upon boiling try to add 8 to 10 pieces Kalumata leaves to get the extract . Boil for few minutes until the water turned into greenish yellow.
6.) mix the until fully coated.
Note: Some of the participants have recorded the entire cooking demonstration and uploaded some videos in You Tube .
Nilasing na Mangga ( Fermented Mangoes ) were popular among the revolutionary forces. They are fermented using cerveza (San Miguel beer – The company was founded in 1890) . According to Ms. Rheeza – They were an accidental discovery by the women of Bulacan.
When the Spaniards are chasing the revolutionary guerrillas from the towns. The women had to cover their traces by hiding all the foods and provisions.
Instead of throwing away the cerveza ( beers) what the women did was to pour them in earthenware jars together with rock salt , sugar and mangoes . They hid the earthenware jars by covering them with banana leaves and buried them .
After 2 or 3 days when the revolutionary forces came back and tried to ask for the cervezas or beer . The women pointed to the earthenware jars with mangoes . The fermentation process made the mangoes delicious .
In elementary , One of our home-economic teacher ( who hails from Bulacan ) taught us on how to preserve foods and preserved mangoes using almost the same technique minus the beer.
1 kilo ( carabao variety green ) but there are other varieties that can be used like piko and baklang mannga ( intermediate variety )
1/4 cup of rock salt ( they call it bastos ) 1/2 cup of white sugar ( taste can vary ) for more sweetness (1 cup)
1 bottle San Miguel 375ml beer pale pilsen for every kilo of mangoes
1.) Try to sliced the green mangoes into smaller size
2.) Mixed the ingredients in a bowl
3.) Put the ingredients inside the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days .
San Miguel Corporation : http://www.sanmiguelbrewery.com.ph/
Kalumata or Kalomata Tree
The leaves of this tree is very important in the flavoring of Gorgorya / Gurgurya / Golloria / . It took a while before some local horticulturists, botanist before they were able to properly gave its scientific name.
Local horticulturists and botanists at first could not properly identify this tree species because of its similarities between Curry Tree or Anise but since the tree is not easily propagated and will require moist soil conditions . The viability of its seeds is quite short.
It was narrowed down to just Causena anismum -olens or related species. But we are still not sure until properly examined. This was identified by my friend Ms. Regielene Soriano – Gonzales because we cannot rely on website alone.
It is called in a lot of local names mostly from the Tagalog and Kapampangan speaking areas.
Common Names: Kayumanis , Kalumata , Kalomata , Kamañgianis , Maisipaisi
Stuart Exchange : http://www.stuartxchange.com/Kayumanis.html
Sukang Bulacan -Pamana ni Ka Mila
There is a room at the ground floor where vinegar is fermented and converted into a small selling area . The town is known for- Sukang Bulacan made from fermented nipa palm sap said to be of the highest quality and is organic . The fermentation process is said to have been an heirloom family recipe from Mrs. Milagros S. Enriquez hence on the label – Pamana ni Ka Mila
Several participants again went on a buying spree for this unique organically fermented vinegar made from the sap of nipa palms. A 700ml bottle of the famed vinegar cost around Php 70 to Php 80 pesos ! It is quite Cheap considering the amount of time and quality of the ingredients that were used.
I bought 2 bottles 700ml of nipa palm vinegar and some of their homemade products
For those interested in buying this products along with the Gurgurya and other pastries that the foundation sells. Due to the high demand and limited quantity of production . It is wise to pre-order in advance specially for bulk orders.
Address: Pamana ni Ka Mila Products -Molina Street , Barangay San Jose , Bulakan- Bulacan province.
Contact Information : 0922-4410520 / 0918-9031230
Nina Enriquez 0922 441 0520
The group was given another round of tour within the ancestral house and a sampling of the desserts and pan de bonete ( specialty of the town) Unfortunately , I did not took photos of the upper floors since my camera is getting low battery .
Pan de Bonete, Pambonete , Bonete
Pan de Bonete , Pambonete, Bonete – This is one of the specialties of the town . The pan de bonete looks different from what we are used to eat in Metro Manila. But this is quite popular in the towns of Bulakan , Lolomboy , Bocaue, Pateros, Pasig , Paete in Laguna .
Bonete -They are call as such since bonete bread is tall shaped buns or shaped of baby’s bonette .
Pambonete / Pan de Bonete was derived from the Spanish phrase “pan bonete”, “pan” which means bread and “bonete” which means cap.
Everyone is very full and some of the participants dubbed the tour ” Busog Liglig sa Sarap” .
It is past 7:00pm and We still have 2 more places to go. We decided to shoved-off the Guiguinto Plant Center tour since it is already dark by the time we left the Enriquez Ancestral House. It took us another 20 minutes to reach the next stop.
Euro Bakery is another food institution of Bulacan. They are known for their different pastries like Inipit , Ensaymada and Rolls. The bakery’s tagline ” Old Fashioned Ensyamada of Malolos ” means that their ensaymada’s are the ones that our grandparents and parents enjoyed. Meaning that they have not changed the ingredients and style of baking these ensaymadas.
The group were greeted by the proprietor of the bakery Ms. Bessy Ramos. Their most famous specialties are the inipit and ensaymadas.
Ms. Bessy Ramos together with Ms. Patricia Karol-Ong one of the participants of the culinary tour.
Inipit de Leche ( Pressed ) chiffon cake with sweet custard fillings in between then fold-up it up . They are cut into small bite-size cubes then packed them in a box – Each box cost Php 250 while there is a much cheaper alternative , the excess ( tabas) is also being sold at a slightly cheaper price.
The custard used in the filling consists of condense milk , sugar and butter.
The bakery also sells other popular cookies and regional pastries among them are galletas , tortillas, uraro , pepsin , pilipit, San Nicolas biscuit among others.
Other branches in Metro Manila:
- Glorietta 4 – Food Choices, Glorietta 4, Ayala Ave. cor. Pasay Rd, Makati Ave. & EDSA Ayala Center, Makati. Tel: 816-1651.
- Greenbelt 1 – Ground Floor, Greenbelt 1, Paseo de Roxas cor. Legaspi St. Ayala Center, Makati
- Greenhills Shopping Center – G/F Lifestyle Center, Greenhills, San Juan. Tel: 616-0537.