Muruecos is the name of a common rice stick or suman as Filipinos call it. It was supposedly my grandmother’s favorite suman. I like it too and featuring it for Lasang Pinoy 20th Edition, Binalot made the effort certainly worthwhile.
Again, this was my first time to try this recipe. By the way, I used white sugar instead of brown. I had this thought the dark latik will make a great contrast with the white sticky rice. You be the judge. I asked my mother how it was made but got no details like proportions and cooking time. We never made this at home even when my grandmother, who instructed rather than cooked, was around. So this was really a huge task for me to undertake. Actually, for all the work that goes into this, I’d rather buy this next time. It didn’t turn out bad …look at the evidence….errrr…I mean photo!
And honestly, I don’t know how suman artisans make any profit. The cooking time alone will eat up any gains. Then there’s the wrapping…how on earth they make a perfect suman each and every time certainly boggles the mind.
The wrapper is a young banana leaf. To prepare the leaf, wipe it down with a clean damp cloth to remove any debris. Pass the whole leaf over an open flame to make it easier to handle. A hot clothes iron will also do the job. Cut into rectangles about 4×12 inches.
So here’s the recipe:
2 c. sticky rice
2 c. pure coconut milk
1 c. white or brown sugar (brown sugar is used for the original Suman Muruecos)
1/4 tsp. salt
4 c. coconut milk from second extraction
1 young banana leaf, prepared as described above
Start by washing the sticky rice over running water. Strain to remove excess water. Soak the rice in a bowl with the pure coconut milk. Season with the sugar and salt. Adjust to your taste. Cover and leave in refrigerator at least 4 hours.
Lay out a piece of your banana leaf wrap on a small flat tray, wrong side up. Put 1 1/2 tablespoon of the soaked rice on one end. Top with latik as shown in photo.
Then take the leaf on the end where the rice is, move the rice over an inch and fold over the leaf once to secure it. Make sure the rice grains don’t run off as you fold all the way to the end. You can do this by folding one side, then lifting and repeating for the other side. When you have folded the whole leave over your rice stick, fold the sides so the ends meet in the center of your rice stick.
Take two of the sticks and tie it loosely back to back with a strand of banana leaf. Place this in a stock pot and continue wrapping until all your rice and wrap is used up. Cover the wrapped rice rice sticks with the coconut cream. If this doesn’t cover the rice sticks, add more water to your pot.
Cover and bring to a boil. Allow this to simmer for 2 hours.