How do you like your ensaymada

Just how do you like your ensaymada? If you are like most Filipinos, chances are that you like it soft and moist on the inside, with a light golden crust on the outside, and loaded with cheese or your other favorite toppings. Maybe even with a generous amount of filling that, once heated for a few seconds on the microwave, leaves just the right melted goodness on the sweet bread.

Tablea ensaymada.

If this is your idea of a real good ensaymada, then what you might have in mind are the ensaymadas of Baby Pat Breads and Pastries, a home-based bakeshop in Santa Rosa, Laguna, best known for its delicious, color-coded ensaymadas.

Peanut butter Chocnut ensaymada | photographs by dolly dy-zulueta for the
daily tribune

Color-coded? Yes, because each flavor of ensaymada is wrapped in a certain color to instantly identify its flavor. There are 16 flavors and therefore 16 colors in the collection. Regular patrons would be able to tell their favorite variant just by the colored wrapper and pick it up confidently from the box when it is delivered. The premium specialty ensaymadas and savory selections are Classic Queso de Bola (white), Ube Queso de Bola (violet), speculoos (Red), Nutella (orange), latik (yellow), tablea (brown), salted egg (cerulean blue), peanut butter Chocnut (mustard), Gruyere (apple green), Parmesan (dark green), mocha (black), matcha (bright green), sweet ham and salted egg (pink), bacon (silver), Spam (royal blue), and Chinese ham (gold). Two new flavors have recently been developed: Vigan longganisa (indigo) and adobo (Manila paper).

Nutella ensaymada.

While a number of them are classic flavors of ensaymada that people usually look for, such as Classic Queso de Bola and Ube Queso de Bola, new creations are consciously made using proudly local ingredients, plus favorite food products or ingredients of Filipinos. Speculoos (inspired by gingerbread, the famous Belgian cookie butter spread is infused in the ensaymada with a hint of cinnamon and a tease of caramelized sugar), Nutella (the hypnotic spiral of the hazelnut spread peeks through a sugary glaze coating the ensaymada), and peanut butter Chocnut (combining flavors of timeless peanut butter and the
choco-peanut bar of everyone’s childhood) are geniuses of an idea that appeal mostly to kids and the kids at heart.

Speculoos ensaymada.

And although each flavor has its own appeal and gustatory qualities to love, the basic ensaymada bread is consistently soft, buttery and cheesy. It is never dry, and it stays that way even if you keep it at room temperature for a few days.

Baby Pat’s delightful selection of ensaymadas is the result of its founder and chief baker Pearl M. De Guzman’s long and steady love affair with her favorite pastry. She established Baby Pat Breads and Pastries in 2010, in memory of her mother Patria Ramirez Macalindong, who had passed on in 2007.

“It’s my way of keeping her alive in my mind, in my life, for when I bake, I remember her and how she started it all in the ‘70s. I grew up with her baking and tending to our modest bakeshop, Pat’s Cake House, in Cavite City. My personal vision for Baby Pat is to continue my beloved mother’s legacy of pure passion for baking excellence,” explains Pearl, who spent long hours in her kitchen developing her own ensaymada recipe and continues to improve on it all the time.

Queso de bola ensaymada.

Yes, Pearl named Baby Pat after her mom, who was known as Mama Pat, but at the same time also named it after her two children, Patricia and Patrick. She initially sold just two kinds of ensaymadas
— Classic and Ube — and developed all the other flavors over time. As busy
home-based bakeshop, Baby Pat accommodates phoned-in orders and delivers to key cities of the country that have airports.

The ensaymadas come in boxes of six, 12 and 18 pieces at P1,450, P2,850, and P4,050, respectively. Orders must be placed in advance through 0917-7901127 (call, text, Viber and WhatsApp) for pick up at the home bakeshop or
door-to-door delivery service for a minimal fee. Overseas orders may be accommodated, provided that a personal delivery with any traveling balikbayan friend or relative has been arranged.

And, oh, while Baby Pat’s ensaymadas are good at cool room temperature for three days, you can enjoy them even more by heating them in the microwave oven for eight to 10 seconds or in the oven toaster for one to two minutes. A cup of freshly brewed coffee or hot chocolate should be a perfect match.

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