Latiya

Pronounced ‘la-tee-ja’, this is a classic Chamorro dessert.  A light, creamy, custard-like pudding topped with a generous sprinkling of ground cinnamon tops a layer of scrumptious cake.  I say ‘custard-like’ only because my version of Latiya contains NO eggs, unlike most of the variations of this recipe.

The cake options are endless, but my favorite, by far, is carrot cake, and not just any carrot cake, mind you, but a moist rich version made with carrots (of course), pineapples, raisins, and lots and lots of nuts!

Pound cake is another favorite for this, as is another classic Chamorro dessert:  Chamorro Cake.

The key to assembling this oh-so-yummy dessert is to put lots of space between the pieces of cake.  This way, you can pour the creamy latiya topping in between the nooks and crannies.  Oh, I’m drooling just thinking about it.

Here’s my recipe for “classic” latiya…give it a try.  I think you’ll like it!  🙂

If you are a coconut-lover like me, scroll on down for my coconut version of my latiya recipe.

Latiya

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The photo below contains my recipe for “regular” Latiya.  Click on the thumbnail below to open a full-sized version of the photo to view my recipe.

Latiya

 

Drumroll please…..and now for my Coconut Latiya Recipe.  You don’t want to miss out on this one.

Annie’s Coconut Latiya:

Latiya

Ingredients:

  • 1 Sara Lee pound cake (I use the smaller one and slice it about the width of my thumb)
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 1 can water (use milk can)
  • 2 cans coconut milk
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar (more or less to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  • 8 HEAPING teaspoons corn starch
  • Cinnamon

Directions:

  1. In a medium pan, combine the evaporated and coconut milk (reserve the can of water), butter, sugar, vanilla and coconut flakes. Cook over medium heat.
  2. Mix the cornstarch with the can of water. When the butter has melted, add the cornstarch/water mixture.
  3. Stir constantly with a whisk until the mixture comes to a boil; continue cooking for about a minute longer then immediately pour over pound cake.
  4. Sprinkle the top of the latiya with cinnamon then allow to cool.

Rosketti ~ a Chamorro cookie

I won’t lie to you…you WILL need to have a tall glass of milk or water when you eat these starchy Chamorro cookies.  It calls for an entire container of corn starch after all, but despite all that starch, this is a melt-in-your mouth cookie you won’t want to miss out on.

As a little girl, I remember going to rosaries just so that I can have some of these yummy cookies.  I’d CAREFULLY (they crumble easily) wrap a couple of them in a napkin to bring home for later.

Nowadays, you’d expect to pay a good chunk of change to buy some ready-made for you.  I used to love receiving the occasional care package with a Crab Biscuit can inside.  That was the telltale sign, the can, for it wasn’t biscuits inside, but Rosketti, carefully packed so as not to break any.  But even if they did break, I didn’t dare throw any crumbs away!  Oh no!  I’d scoop those little bits up and eat them with a spoon, it was like gold to me!

But that was about oh, maybe 25 years ago.  I’ve since learned to make these crumbly, melt-in-your-mouth delights myself.

Since I originally posted this several years ago, I’ve since learned a bit about the origin of the name of this cookie.  This information is from the Guam Hispanic Heritage Facebook page:

“The ROSKAS of Guam. In many countries in the Hispanic world, on the Day of the Three Kings it is customary to serve a ring shaped sweet bread called ROSCA DE REYES. It is believed that in Guam, common Chamorro treats such as ROSKETI, BOÑELUS ROSKAS (commonly known as “yeast donuts”), and ROSKU shortbread were created as a simpler form of the traditional Spanish ROSCA. In Chamorro the word ROSKA refers to a ring or coil shape. ROSKETI and ROSKU are variants that carry the same meaning. The meaning and use of the word ROSKA seems to have been forgotten. And has resulted in ROSKETI being made other shapes in which they can’t truly be called ROSKETI.”

(Original post:  https://www.facebook.com/320261928099151/posts/1820010198124309/?extid=0&d=n)

Additionally, the owner of the Facebook page suggested that a more historically accurate name for what I have pictured below is “monedas” which means “coins.”

Well, whatever you choose to call it, it’ll be delicious regardless. 😁

Give my recipe a try, but have that glass of milk handy.  Enjoy!  🙂

Click on each thumbnail below to open up a full-sized photo.

Rosketti 1

Rosketti 2

Rosketti 3

Rosketti 4

These are so fun to make with a cookie spritzer.  Oh, the fun shapes you can make!

ENJOY! 🙂

Rosketti

 

Honey Wheat Bread

One of my favorite restaurants serves this soft, sweet, and oh-so-delicious brown bread that has a crunchy oat coating on the outside.  You know what restaurant I’m talking about — it’s probably your favorite place too!

This is my recreation of that delightfully sweet brown bread that is heavenly when slathered with melted butter!  Are you drooling yet?

Click on the photo below for my full recipe.

Honey Wheat Bread

How to Roast a Fresh Pumpkin ~ a Pedro “PoP” Aguon Tutorial

Pedro “PoP” Aguon was a chef in the Navy. PoP passed down to his family his extensive knowledge of cooking, and his daughter, Arlene Sablan Aguon, is kind enough to share some of PoP’s recipes and cooking tips with us. That was PoP’s way, sharing with the younger generations in order to keep the knowledge of our Chamorro alive. Rest in peace, PoP…your family and friends miss you terribly.

From Arlene:
“My PoP’s taught me how to roast a fresh pumpkin. It makes the best pies, Buchi Buchi & Turnovers. It makes the home smell like Thanksgiving too. ENJOY. ” ~ @untie R

Freshly roasted pumpkin tastes better than any canned pumpkin you buy in stores. Try roasting pumpkins PoP’s way. You’ll be glad you did. 🙂

Roasted Pumpkins ~ A Pop Aguon Tutorial

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