Most of the time when you don’t live in your original home country and see new dishes and food from there all you can do is just drool over your computer screen and wish that someday that new type of food arrives in your country either through a pasalubong or your Asian shop imports it. Sometimes that happens but in cases that it does not your next best option is to make one, like our recipe for today as an example, the Black Kutsinta.
Black Kutsinta is derived from kutsinta, an orange brownish sticky jelly textured rice cake made from a mix of rice flour (sometimes mixed with all-purpose flour), sugar and lye water served with freshly grated coconuts. Black kutsinta shares a lot of common ingredients but what sets it apart is the use of blackstrap molasses and its toppings, the dulce de leche and toasted coconut strips. This is quite new, the hype did start around early 2017 but really become popular around mid-2018 where I first saw it in Instagram, since them I was wondering how it tasted like. As I research, I saw most recipes uses black food colour, but I have a hunch that the original one will not be using it, why bother at all if you just want to change the colour. Until one day I saw a post on Facebook that this thing tasted like molasses and that’s where I based my recipe.
Black Kutsinta is way much different in taste compared to the original one, I prefer this over the other, the black strap molasses gives is a warm, sweet, a bit bitter and somewhat smoky and robust flavour. Its less sweet than other molasses and a bit milder, so take note not to use other types of molasses apart from this. What even makes this delicious is the use of a yema like topping similar to dulce de leche then with the toasted coconut, this rice cake is a mix of different interesting but delicious flavour and a variety of texture.
Grease 24 pieces of puto/kutsinta moulds with oil spray then set aside.
Combine all Black Kutsinta ingredients in a bowl, mix it well. Colour will not be black at this stage; it will be more like brown but once it cooks it will turn into a nice hue of black.
Pour mixture into the moulds then place in a prepared steamer, cover top with clean cloth, then place the lid on. Steam for 15 minutes in medium heat. Remove from steamer then let it cool.
Prepare your Dulce de Leche topping, place the unopened can of condensed milk in a pot, fill it with water to cover the whole can then let it boil. Lower to a simmering heat and cook for one hour.
Prepare your Toasted Desiccated Coconut Topping, in a non-stick pan place the desiccated coconut. Place in stove top over medium low heat, toast the desiccated coconut until golden brown, mix frequently to prevent it from burning.
Unmould your black kutsinta, place on serving platters then top it with Dulce de Leche and serve with Toasted Desiccated Coconut.