Rainy days are certainly here while the -ber months are just around the corner. It’s the wet and cold season in the Philippines; and a comforting bowl of Champorado is always the best way to spend drizzling mornings with a chocolaty smile, so better stock your favorite cocoa powder and sticky rice, and have a thankful heart in this season of drips, splatter, and hugs. Oh yeah, hugs!
Champorado, also known as Chocolate Rice Porridge, is one of the most beloved breakfasts in the Philippines, and this is best eaten during the cold and rainy season. It may sound weird for a Westerner (rice plus chocolate, right?). Given a chance, I’m sure you will treasure this classic Filipino recipe.
You see, in the flavorful and playful world of Asian cuisine, rice is the most versatile and most celebrated food. It’s a stapled accompaniment for almost all main courses; it can become sweet desserts, noodles, rolls, and beverages. Yes — we are the Rice People. And rice with chocolate is not a farfetched combination for us, Asians.
Champorado’s origins can be traced during the 16th century Spanish colonial period in the Philippines. As soon as the Spaniards introduced cocoa, through the Galleon Trade, the Filipinos added rice; and hurrah, a unique recipe was born!
Its taste is somewhat similar to chocolate-flavored oatmeal. But I would say it’s much better because of its sticky-and-chewy rice texture. It can pass for a breakfast and a dessert. And who wants both? Breakfast and dessert will always equate to an endearing comfort food.
Drizzle Champorado with condensed milk, and you are on for a good start. Add Tuyo, or Salted Dried Fish, and you are in for an adventurous experience of Filipino cuisine — try it and you will not regret it ;]
Some fancy words about this dish:
- Tuyo: usually Salted Dried Herring, this can be other types of fish; you can buy it in Asian groceries
- Tsokolate Tablea: Cocoa in tablet form
Best enjoyed with:
- Black coffee
Restaurants that offer this dish:
- Max’s Restaurant: Champorado @ 93.50 Php
- Tapa King: Champorado @ 50.00 Php
With that, let’s start cooking.
- Hershey’s Cocoa Powder (or Tsokolate Tablea), 1/3 cup
- Rice (preferably Sticky Rice), 2 cups
- Water, 1 liter
- Sugar, 1/2 cup
- Condensed Milk
- Bottled cooked Tuyo in Corn Oil (Note: You can also fry Tuyo in oil; cooking Tuyo can be very smelly, be sure to open windows)
- Boil 2 cups of water in a sauce pan
- Add cocoa powder and stir, let it boil for at least 2 minutes
- Add rice and cook it until very soft, or until the desired texture is achieved
- Continuously add water and stir until the desired loosened porridge texture is achieved
- Add sugar and let it boil until dissolved, adjust sweetness if necessary
- Transfer the Champorado in a bowl, drizzle with condensed milk
- Add Tuyo
- Serve while hot
- Serves: 4
- Preparation time: 5 minutes
- Cooking time: 30 minutes
- Dish: Filipino
- Related recipes: Rice Porridge