For Manileños like us, the word puto maya only forms part of the childhood expression Gaya-gaya Puto-Maya (English: Copycat!). The word puto-maya does not actually add meaning to the expression, rather it is just added to the end to rhyme with Gaya-gaya.
To finally give meaning to the word, we went to Bankrehan Public Market in Davao City to try puto maya. We found a carinderia near the fruit section that serves this delicacy.
The puto maya was served by scooping a portion using a saucer and molding it into a disk using another saucer. Each serving costs Php8.00. Compared to similar rice cakes such as suman, biko and bud-bod, puto maya has a distinct gingery taste. It may be eaten plain or may be sprinkled with sugar.
|steps in preparing sikwate|
Sikwate is then prepared fresh as you order. Tablea is boiled in a pot and mixed using a batirol (a wooden whisk). Milk is then poured into the cup (optional) and followed by the freshly made hot chocolate mixture. You can add sugar to the drink depending on your taste. A cup of sikwate costs Php15.00, add Php3.00 to have milk with your sikwate.
Halfway through our cup of sikwate, more and more locals arrived and sat at the carinderia and ordered puto maya & sikwate. We must have brought luck to the store :-)