Filipinos who grew up, or who reside, in the Philippines will know what I mean by ‘Magnolia’s pinipig crunch’. Filipinos who grew up abroad might not. I don’t expect too many foreigners to be familiar with it either.
Magnolia was an ice cream company that was bought out by Nestle a few years ago. Pinipig crunch was one of their original products. What is it? Imagine a popsicle but there’s vanilla ice cream instead of frozen juice. The vanilla ice cream is coated with chocolate and bits of pinipig are embedded in the chocolate.
What is pinipig? The most convenient description would be puffed rice or rice krispies — something similar to what you get in a bar of Nestle Crunch. But, according to the oldies, pinipig is not just any puffed rice. It is pounded immature glutinous rice. There are even some claims that genuine pinipig can only be made from a special variety of rice.
These chocolate-pinipig balls were inspired by Magnolia’s pinipig crunch. I was in the supermarket the other day and found cooked pinipig being sold in pouches. I took a pouch, inspected it, and I just knew I would buy it. My first instinct was to use the pinipig as topping for brownies — and I will soon — but, earlier today, I wanted to create a quick dessert. My daughter, Sam, had been asking me for days to make dessert and I had been too lethargic… the heat, you know? But I figured if I made something really easy, it wouldn’t be such a hassle and I’d be making my daughter happy. And my chocolate-pinipig balls were born.
Just mix together equal amounts of melted chocolate and pinipig, form into balls and let stand until firm.
Equal amounts refers to mass, not weight. So, if you have 1 cup of melted chocolate, you mix that with 1 cup of pinipig.
How do you melt the chocolate?
Cut or break the chocolate into small pieces and melt in a double boiler, or in a heatproof bowl over a pan of hot water.
What kind of chocolate?
Eating chocolate would be best — like Hershey’s. But you can buy baking chocolate at much cheaper prices.
Yes, add a few drops of vanilla extract to the chocolate before mixing it with the pinipig. :)