I ran into some puto at the store just the other day.

Just like you, I saw a box that said, "Puto" on it and I immediately thought, "whaaaaaaat?".   I then thought this was one of those wacky translation things because I was in an Asian market.

Now, let's drop back and say, do we really need to define what the word "puto" means around here?  How about we just say it's not nice at all? How about we kind of get rid of that word in general and move onto better things? We can do that by learning another definition.

It turns out that all of this is just something that was not on my radar. Puto is actually a steamed Filipino rice cake. Apparently, puto is eaten much in the same way that we would have cornbread with a meal.

Here's a quote from one of my Facebook friends:


We're part Filipino and part Mexican and it's hella awkward when I make these and have to say what they are. Lol in all seriousness....they are DELICIOUS!! Spongy, not too sweet...but I just play it safe and call em "rice cakes".-Lisa D.

Without giving you a full-on recipe, but to help you imagine the taste, the little cakes (or muffins or balls) are made with rice flour, coconut milk, baking powder, eggs, sugar, salt, and water.

There are supposedly many variations on this recipe, with one predominant variant being "buttered puto" which is made with regular flour, cheese, and "Pandan essence" (vanilla grass).

So, I'm proud of you for sticking with me this far. We turned what we thought was a Spanish pejorative, into a lesson about learning about other cultures and diets. So if you're ever in a Filipino market and someone yells, "puto", they are not calling you a name but letting you know they have a delicious snack cake.

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