Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I Miss Binutong, I miss My Lola As I Miss My Childhood

Photo Credit: Karen Bolaños
Binutong - Lola Andang loves to cook this during special occasions along with ibus, suman and linukay. When I was a kid, I would sit down on the floor made of bamboo wooden slats in our Lola's kitchen in order to watch how she makes this special food. This is made of malagkit (glutinous rice) cooked in coconut cream, sugar, and few salt, then while it is still half-cooked, a scoop of it is placed in a spread of layered banana leaves. The edges of filled banana leaves is gathered together and tied like a pouch and then cooked further in boiling water or thinned coconut milk to complete the cooking. Binutong is traditionally served with hot chocolate and grilled or fried dried fish. Lola does this so perfectly that I wouldn't want to miss this during fiestas and family reunion.
My Lola Andang

It just came across my mind how it was called such and by the term itself, it probably came from  the root word "butok" or to "tie a knot" as the mouthwatering meal is wrapped and tied in layers of banana leaves in order to confine the flavors inside white it is being cooked. 
Seeing this posted along with most of my favorite bicolano delicacies at   brought me a lot of memories from my childhood and my Lola. Thanks to "Culinaria Albay" community page in facebook.

My life during childhood is like that of the binutong. It was so simple yet the essence from within is so rich that anyone would love it. I never had any expensive toys back then, but it was the best and happiest part of my life. No complicated issues, no grudges, no finances to think about, no stressful job, no schedule to catch. Just simply me, enjoying each and every minute of life, trusting, believing and loving. 


  1. Good day po. I'm a student from Bicol University conducting a research regarding kakanin. I've read this blog post and thought that this may help me with my study. Is it possible to ask few questions from you? I'll wait for your response. You can contact me on my facebook account. Here's the link, thanks ^__^
    ( )

  2. Hi Cristelle! thanks on your interest regarding this post. i was just able to see your message today as i have not been able to update my blog lately.

    i will be glad to extend any help i can regarding your research.

  3. Hi, Good day, Mr. Michael Memoracion. There is an article in Wikipedia about local delicacies on a certain town that cites your post as the reference (the article is POLANGUI, ALBAY under the subheading LOCAL PRODUCTS and DELICACIES). I would just like to inform you that you might have misunderstood the word 'binu'tong', as coming from the root word 'bu'tok' or 'to tie a knot'. Instead, the root word is 'bu'tong' which means 'pouch or pouch-shaped' and upon affixation, becomes 'bu'tong + -IN-', 'BINU'TONG', which means 'something that is put in a pouch or pouch-shaped receptacle'. As a matter of fact, the glutinous rice that is to be cooked are placed in banana leaves which duly resembles a pouch so that the coconut milk wouldn't spill out upon cooking. Should you have further questions kindly notify me through Gmail at Thank you.