Espasol (rice pudding) is a native Filipino sweet treat made from rice flour and coconut strips cooked in coconut milk. The cooked pudding is shaped into cylinders and then rolled into toasted rice flour. It is believed that espasol originated from Laguna, Philippines. The best espasol can be bought in the towns of Nagcarlan, Alaminos, Pagsanjan and Los Baños, Laguna.
When you are in Liliw, Laguna, espasol can be bought from one of the stalls there selling sweet treats at 3 packs for PhP 100. In Los Baños, Laguna, you can buy espasol from the Original Buko Pie store at PhP 25 per pack (cheaper than the one in Liliw but still delicious). Lety's Buko Pie also sells espasol but instead of cylinders, their espasol is circular (costs PhP 80 per box). My favorite espasol is from the town of Pagsanjan - the espasol is not rolled on or dusted with toasted rice flour but it is denser and does not taste too dry. Espasol of Pagsanjan can be bought at Aling Emma's store that also sells the famous bibingka of Pagsanjan.
For those who want to try cooking their own espasol, here are two recipes I found in the internet:
1 1/2 coconut milk
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup sweet macapuno (coconut sport)
1 cup toasted ground malagkit or sweet rice flour
extra toasted sweet rice flour for dredging
Put coconut milk and sugar in a saucepan, heat until the sugar is melted then add the macapuno strips, bring to a gentle boil. Gradually add the toasted ground sweet rice while stirring. The flour will absorb all the liquid and will form into a ball. Lower the heat and cook for about 10 minutes with continuous stirring. Turn off heat and let cool for about 10 minutes.
When the dough is cool enough to handle, You can divide it into balls and roll each ball into a mini log like a tootsie roll and dredged it in toasted flour or if you want it to be more fun and appetizing for the kids, cut it with different shapes using cookie cutters. Roll it first to your desired thickness in a floured surface then cut, dredge and serve.
Yield: 30 pieces.