Updated: Sep 5
A scent evokes nostalgia. It can transport you to your favorite memory, bringing you back to a specific time and place. That’s what Royal Bibingka does for me. The crispy edges and the ooey gooey center just melt in your mouth. When the buttery cake bakes in the oven, the edges cook into a caramelized crust, and the coconut flakes roast, releasing an aroma of buttery caramel pancakes. I remember when the sweet scent of Bibingka would fill my house as my mother would bake it for my birthday. Sometimes I would look forward to having Bibingka rather than my own birthday cake. Bibingka will forever remind me of home, my family, and all the amazing parties they would host.
When I started performing drag I wanted a name that connected me with my Filipino heritage-Bibingka immediately came to mind. Yet most Americans were unfamiliar with Bibingka, so I called my mom for the recipe and started baking this cake for my shows. I would introduce my drag name by feeding this dessert to the audience. I wasn't surprised to find that the cakes were an instant hit. I was so compelled to share this with my community and fans, and began to sell these delicious rice cakes, derived and modified from my family recipe, at local New York Pop-up events. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit the US, everything shutdown and we had to go into lock down. We needed to find creative ways to connect with our community. I performed for digital drag shows and cooking segments sharing my Vegan Bibingka Recipe.
Since my pop-up events were such a viable part of my business, I wanted to make Bibingka more accessible to my customers. When baked, the sweet rice flour wasn't stable enough to ship through the mail and some of the ingredients were hard to find at local grocery stores. So I created a dry baking mix kit that would allow my clients to bake this cake from home. Usually Bibingka can be stored at room temperature for about 72 hours. However, It's best if kept frozen, then thawed out later for consumption. Bibingka can be kept in the fridge, but usually it changes the constancy and texture of the cake. When this does happen, it can be reheated in the microwave for about 30 seconds to one minute.
Try our Royal Bibingka Mix. Original and Matcha flavor available in our store.
Bibingka is usually baked with a banana leaf. The flavors of leaf absorbs into the cake and cooks into a fluffy yet dense texture. Royal Bibingka is made without a banana leaf, which roasts the edges into a golden brown crust. There are many different interpretations of Bibingka depending on the region of origin. This recipe was passed down from my mother's side of the family which originated from Iloscos Sur, Philippines.
My banana vegan recipe was inspired by a good friend of mine who had a strict vegan diet. As I reworked the recipe I found that the coconut oil doesn't roast the cake as toasty brown as the butter would. However, the banana blends into the cake resembling a banana bread flavor baked into a bouncy mochi like texture. I wasn't sure what to expect when I created this, but it became one of my favorite flavors and the second best selling cake at my pop-up events.
Make it from Scratch
Baking pan options:
Use a 9x9 baking pan
Standard muffin pan (18 pieces)
Mini muffin pan (24 pieces)
Sweet Rice Flour 1/2 LBS or 1 cup
1 Teaspoon baking powder
1/2 Cup of Sugar
2 Cups of milk
1 Teaspoon of vanilla extract
4 Tablespoons of butter
3/4 Cups of sweetened coconut flakes
Pre-heat the oven to 350˚ Fahrenheit.
Mash up the banana into a thick gooey constancy make sure there aren't any lumps. It should resemble the thickness of eggs.
Melt the butter in the microwave for about 30 seconds.
Mix all the dry ingredients together.
Once mixed, add the milk, vanilla extract, mashed up banana, and butter.
Then mix all the ingredients together until the mixture is smooth like pancake batter. No lumps.
Grease the baking pan with cooking spray.
Pour the mixture into the baking pan then sprinkle the coconut flakes on top.
Pop the pan into the oven and bake for about 30 mins until the cake is a light golden brown. Or when a tooth pick inserted into the middle comes out mostly clean
Let it cool for about 5 minutes and enjoy. Masarap!