Fruit Salad with a Filipino Twist
If you are already hooked on tofu sisig, vegan champorado, or vegetable lumpia, then you undoubtedly are more than familiar with how wonderfully well Filipino food lends itself to the vegan life. Ingredients like garlic, tofu, and coconut milk abound in many dishes. Paired with a myriad of spices and sometimes served over banana leaves, they are flavor-packed and often boast a host of textures ranging from sticky (think sweet steamed rice cakes) to chewy (adobong tokwa springs to mind). Below are two fruit salad recipes that will encourage you to try something new and take a leap into the flavorful worlds of Filipino fruits and vegetables.
Buko Salad (Serves six)
“Buko” is the filipino word for coconut. It is also the start ingredient of this salad, which you can freely add other sweet, fleshy fruits to. One fruit we have included in this dish is a unique looking fruit called durian. It is large and green and almost hedgehog-like in appearance, yet has a rich, creamy taste that only emerges when it is extremely ripe. This is exactly the state it should be in for this amazing family recipe, which is characterized by its creamy, coconut taste.
3 cups young coconut meat, shredded
I cup canned fruit cocktail, drained
1 cup nata de coco (coconut crème), drained
1 cup kaong (sugar palm fruit), drained
1 cup durian, chopped in small pieces
1 cup vegan cream
1 cup vegan marshmallows
1 cup vegan condensed milk
Instructions: Combine all the ingredients in a large blow and chill for around an hour before serving.
Vegan Mango Float (Serves four)
Mango is one of Philippines’ most famous and popular fruits, owing in no small part to how sweet and smooth local varieties are. Forget about the stringiness and toughness you can sometimes encounter in mango. This fruit is so sweet in its original state that you would swear it’s been canned! This is an easy but popular dish made in many Filpino homes and served at dinner parties (since they are so easy to make).
5 ripe mangoes, sliced
2 cups vegan graham crackers, crushed or roughly blended
2.5 cups vegan whipped cream
1.5 cup vegan condensed milk
Instructions: Whip the cream until soft peaks form. Gradually add the condensed milk in a fine, steady stream, using folding movements so the cream doesn’t lose its fluffiness. Once this is done, you’re ready to start assembling the dessert. In a glass serving dish, spread a fine layer of the cream mixture. Add one layer of crushed graham crackers, then a layer of your mango slices. Keep layering these ingredients until your un out of them. Garnish the dessert with a few mango slices and powdered graham crackers, and refrigerate overnight or for at least five hours.
If you love trying international food, then expand your recipe list with a few Filipino fruit salad options. We have provided two recipes, above, but there are so many more to choose from. Fruits reign supreme in Filipino desserts, as do creamy complementary ingredients like coconut milk and cream.