Calamay - Bohol's Must-Have Treat

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They say that a trip to Bohol would never be complete without bringing some of its signature delicacy, a simple yet sweet treat in native coconut shell, the Calamay. So don’t forget to bring home some of these for those with sweet tooth at home.

Calamay or Kalamay Versions around the Philippines

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Calamay, or Kalamay,  is known across the archipelago and there are many versions of it in different regions of the country. This is so because it's procedure so easy to follow and the ingredients are very common.

Basically, its composition is made up of well-milled glutinous rice, coconut milk, sugar plus chopped peanuts as optional. The milled rice is then poured into the half-heated coconut milk. Constant stirring is needed until the right consistency of stickiness is achieved. This what makes Calamay famous. Two hours of constant stirring over low fire is not a joke. It resembles the patience, dedication and hard work of every Boholanos.

Like the Peanut Kisses, Boholano give importance on the nutritional value of peanuts. Chunks of peanuts are then added into the mixture, giving it texture and its nutty flavor, especially made for peanut lovers. But there are also sold without peanuts. You just have to ask the vendors which one has peanuts and which one doesn’t.

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There are many manufacturers of this delicious specialty around Bohol but the best-tasting ones can only be bought at Jagna, Bohol.

Jagna is known as the “Calamay Country” where the finest Calamays are made. Calamay mixture is then placed in a clean coconut husk sealed with a red band.

According to a report, the calamay industry has been giving the members of Jagna Calamay Makers and Vendors Association (JACAMAVEA) enough income to bring food to their tables.

However, they also suffered great loss when the seaport at Jagna was temporarily closed. Now that the port was reopened, the business is back.

There are no reasons to leave Bohol without these simple sweets.

Vendors in every ports of Bohol are strategically displaying their products, often by three’s for a hundred pesos.

There are also sold in plastic canisters but tourist tend to buy the ones in coconut shells.

For you loved ones, Calamay is the best gift for your homecoming from Bohol.

Substitute it for your usual spreads. It can even be refrigerated, and then sliced like cheese. Enjoy.

calamay recipe

I have found a recipe on how to make a Calamay over the net. Pretty simple, here it is:

Kalamay Ingredients

  • 10 liters water
  • 10 kilos white sugar
  • 2 gantas malagkit
  • 20 pieces coconut

Procedure

  1. Soak the malagkit overnight.
  2. Grate the coconuts.
  3. Extract the milk from the grated coconut two times: first, with 5 liters of water, then with 3 liters of water.
  4. Pour the malagkit into the first coconut milk extract, and grind the mixture.
  5. Mix sugar with the second coconut milk extract, and boil to make latik.
  6. Pour the ground malagkit into the boiling latik, and stir for 4 hours or until the mixture becomes very sticky.
  7. Put the mixture into half of a coconut shell. Cool for 3 hours. Then cover with the other half of the shell.

Check out These Other Bohol Delicacies

  1. Bohol Delicacies
  2. Pastries of Baclayon
  3. Purple Yam of Dauis Bohol
  4. Bohol Purple Yam Ubi Kinampay
  5. Bohol's Ubi Festival
  6. Filipino Cuisine- Bohol-Philippines
  7. Culinary Gem - Alona Beach, Panglao Island
  8. Products of Bohol Philippines
  9. Bohol Culture
  10. Peanut Kisses- The Best Take-Home Snack
  11. Calamay- Bohol's Must-Have Treat
  12. Bohol Shopping Souvenirs: Where to Buy the Best Gifts and Treasures
  13. Bohol Ube or Purple Yam
  14. Bohol Freshwater Fish


types of calamay/kalamay across the philippines

Kalamay is a beloved Filipino delicacy that comes in various types and flavors. One of the well-known variations is Kalamay Ube, which stands out for its natural purple hue derived from the use of purple yam. It has a distinctive lavender or purple color and a smoother texture compared to Ube Halaya, another popular Filipino dessert.

Aside from Kalamay Ube, there are other regional variations of kalamay found throughout the Philippines. Antipolo Kalamay, also known as Kalamay Perya, is a specialty of Antipolo and is typically served as a flat disk on banana leaves, topped with latik curds. It has a denser and chewier texture.

Bohol Kalamay is another noteworthy variation. It is known for its range of sweetness, from extremely sweet to mildly sweet. What sets it apart is the unique packaging. It is sold inside halved smooth coconut shells called bagol or paya, sealed with red crepe paper known as papel de japon. This type of packaging is referred to as "kalamay-hati" or half kalamay.

Baguio Kalamay, also called Sundot Kulangot (Picked Booger), is a type of kalamay from Baguio. It gets its name from its consistency and is sweetened with molasses. It is packed into halved pitogo shells and sealed with red crepe paper, similar to Bohol Kalamay.

Iloilo Kalamay, or Kalamay-Hati, from the province of Iloilo and Negros, has a thicker consistency compared to other types of kalamay. San Enrique in Iloilo even celebrates a Kalamay Festival to honor this delicacy.

Candon Kalamay from Ilocos Sur is sold wrapped in banana leaves or coconut shells and also has its own Kalamay Festival. Nilubyan or Iniruban is a variant of kalamay made from pounded green rice, originating from Camiling, Tarlac. Mindoro Kalamay, from the island of Mindoro, often includes grated coconut and is flavored with peanut butter or vanilla.

Indang Kalamay, also known as Calamay Buna, is a sweet delicacy made from sticky rice, brown sugar, coconut milk, and panutsa (native jaggery). It is well-known in Indang, Cavite.

There are also kalamay variants based on secondary ingredients. Kalamay Gabi is made with taro (gabi) and has a milky white color. Kalamay na Pinpipig, also known as Kalamay na Duman or Kalamay Pandan, is flavored with pandan leaf extracts and topped with toasted and pounded immature rice grains (pinipig or duman), giving it a vibrant green color.

Each type of kalamay offers a unique taste and texture, showcasing the diverse culinary traditions across the Philippines. Whether you're a fan of the classic kalamay or eager to try the different regional variations, these delightful treats are sure to satisfy your sweet cravings and provide a taste of Filipino heritage.

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