Bilo bilo or tambo tambong is an original Filipino dish that can be a meryenda or dessert.
The secret of a creamy, tasty, and perfect texture of bilo-bilo is by putting a generous amount of coconut milk or cream and by choosing the first-class (grade A) quality of the malagkit or sweet rice (diket in Iloko). Here’s my version of bilo bilo…the all-time favorite of my family, friends and relatives as they always request me to cook for this every special occasion. Have fun cooking 🙂
1 kg. malagkit/glutinous rice flour – formed into bits of circles
1 kg. kamote (sweet potato) or ube (purple yam) – sliced into small cubes/rectangular shape
1/2 kg. banana (saging na saba) – sliced into small cubes
1/2 kg. Chinese gabi – sliced into small cubes
1/4 kg. langka (if preferred, it’s your own choice since this fruit is seasonal and others don’t like the strong & sweet aroma of it)
2 cups of sago
1 fresh buko (grated or “kinayod”)
4 cups coconut milk
1/2-3/4 kg. white sugar (variation: 1 pair of tagapulot or “sinam-it” – chopped into tidbits)
2-3 liters of water mixture (to make this, add 1-2 cups of malagkit flour to 2-3 liters of water and dissolve the malagkit flour. This will thicken the bilo-bilo.)
pinch of salt
1) Pour the coconut milk into a big saucepan or cooking pot and let it boil and simmer while stirring once in a while (under medium heat) for 10 minutes or until the coconut milk becomes thick.
2) Add the water mixture and let it boil.
3) Add the grated fresh buko, followed by the malagkit, chinese gabi and ube/kamote, and let it boil and simmer for 5 minutes as you continue stirring.
4) Add the banana and sago and let it simmer for another 5 minutes as you continue stirring.
5) When all the ingredients are cooked, put the sugar or tagapulot and a pinch of salt and mix well until the sugar is completely blended.
6) Taste and add more sugar if needed but remember that you cannot repair the dish if you put too much sugar while others who prefer a little sweeter bilo-bilo can always add more sugar if they want to. Let it cool in a room temperature for 3 hours and ready to serve.