Giving tablea a delicious twist

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    LOCALLY-MADE chocolates have taken many forms, from highly-processed and mass-produced products to artisanal and exclusive concoctions.

    For many Filipinos, nothing compares to their very own iconic tsokolate, a thick, velvety, piping hot beverage that has been a staple in traditional Filipino breakfasts and a hallmark of many Filipinos’ childhood.

    The main ingredient of tsokolate is tablea, which is made of 100 percent fermented pure cacao that is roasted and ground before being molded into balls or tablets.

    There are other creative ways of using tablea. A cup of tsokolate, for one, is always a good idea but Rezel Kealoha, food photographer, food stylist and recipe developer, suggests adding a twist by pouring a shot of lambanog to the melted tablea mixture, and then adds milk and sugar to taste, and whisk away.

    People become more creative and have used tablea instead of regular chocolate into their brownie batters for a reason that it lends a deeper chocolate flavor.

    In doing this, melt a cup each of tablea and butter together, and set the mixture aside.

    Whisk together two cups each of sugar and flour, a teaspoon of salt, and then add to the tablea mixture. Transfer it to a pan and pop it in for 30 to 35 minutes in the oven. Once baked, let it cool, slice into bite-sized pieces, and indulge.

    Pure tablea’s rich flavor also pairs well with savory dishes such as the Pasta Topped with Grated Tablea available under the tablea collections of Don Juan restaurant.

    There is so much more one can do with tablea especially since the Philippines is abundant in it, having been the entry point of cacao in Asia. Know about the “never-before-told” tale of cacao in the Philippines and other recipes you can make with it on Maximum Foodie.

    Catch the cacao culture of the Philippines on full display as Asian Food Network (AFN) host Sashi De learns more about tablea during his trip to the country on Maximum Foodie.