Like the regular bibingka, royal bibingka is also associated with Christmas but mostly in Vigan. Though it shares the name with the normal bibingka they are two different rice cakes as this one uses glutinous rice flour which makes the texture sticky and dense. This rice cake is usually made out of glutinous rice flour, coconut milk, milk, egg, sugar and cheese; it is then baked until cheese topping becomes golden brown. The flavours are sweet with hints of coconut as well as savory due to the cheese topping.
Traditionally prepared starting from hand milling the rice to make rice flour, hand pressing grated coconut to extract the milk and then cooking it in clay stoves, a really painstaking process but really worth the effort. But for this post thanks to modernization we don’t have to undergo the traditional process in making one but if time permits and if I had the proper utensils I would be glad to do it the old way.
- In a bowl combine together rice flour, sugar and powdered coconut milk.
- Add water, milk and egg. Mix well until free of even in consistency.
- Grease baking pan with margarine then pour mixture, cover it with aluminium foil.
- Bake in 190C preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven then remove aluminium foil cover.
- Sprinkle top with grated cheese and cover it again with aluminium foil, bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven then remove aluminium foil cover.
- Brush top generously with margarine then bake for 10 to 15 more minutes. Remove from oven.
- Brush top generously with margarine for the last time then let it cool down before serving.