10 Jun2010


Rice cakes stewed in coconut milk and mango are a wonderful food pairing. The richness of the coconut milk, the slight hint of ginger, the sweetness of a good mango make this combination a favorite in the Southeast Asian region. They are the essence of enjoying what is grown around you. Simple and sublime. Hard to improve in. So I had never really previously toyed with the idea of playing around with the pairing, figuring, “why mess with a good thing?’.


During a recent trip to Batangas, I spied local mangoes (which aren’t the cats meow) at the market for an amazing PHP30 a kilo. These mangoes, when fully ripe, are good for mango shakes, ice candy, etc so we stock up on them, scoop out the flesh and freeze in individual sized portions. They form the basis for ripe mango shakes for months to come. But as I was buying several kilos, I wondered out loud if they might grill up well, and bought a couple more kilos to experiment with. Next purchase, some sticky rice and grated coconut.


Leny, our resident puto/suman (depending on where in the country you are, plain sticky rice with coconut milk and ginger can be called either) expert made a batch of her puto in time for lunch time dessert. As soon as we got the coals nice and hot for our lunch time barbecue, I sliced up some of the local mangoes (which are a bit more fibrous than Cebu mangoes, and have a sour/sweet flavor) and plopped them down on the hot grill.


The initial results were a bit of a disaster. The mangoes burned to a crisp (second photo from the top) and were ugly and unappeling. A second attempt at a “naked” grill is in the photo above, mango cheek to the right in the picture.


I decided to add some dark brown sugar and grill it for a shorter period, say 2 minutes or so, then turned it over for another few minutes before taking it off the flames.


After cooling the mango down for a couple of minutes, I took one small spoon full and alarm bells went off and a huge smile was plastered on my face. Eureka! YUM. It was a bit like a wonderful mango creme caramel. The sweet glaze on top gave way to a warmed and softened mango underneath. Absolutely delicious. And a wonderful complement to the rice and coconut milk. I realize I am by no means the first to think to grill a mango, but I do think this is the first time anyone has posted this combination and technique on the internet, so I am claiming the a la Marketman title for it!


This is also going into that mythical Marketman cookbook. It’s hard to improve on a classic. But the next time you have access to mangoes and a grill, try this combination and I think it will be hard to go back to the original. :)



  1. Angela says:

    Please let me know when you publish that cookbook. I’d like a signed copy, please ;)

    Jun 10, 2010 | 8:52 am


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  3. felina c. says:

    The sticky rice with coco milk and ginger, i’ve known to call ‘inangit’, not sure if that’s a visayan term, my mom’s from Aklan province, or tagalog. the grilled mango is something new and i can only imagine how superb the pairing would be, sarap yata yun.

    Jun 10, 2010 | 8:55 am

  4. felina c. says:

    The sticky rice with coco milk and ginger, i’ve known to call ‘inangit’, not sure if that’s a visayan term, my mom’s from Aklan province, or tagalog. Grilled mango would be a treat to match!

    Jun 10, 2010 | 8:56 am

  5. junb says:

    The first time I tasted Suman and Mango combination was when my mom bring me to Antipolo. It didn’t really ring a bell a to me since I think I was only 5 or 6 yrs old only. But now whenever I eat at any Thai restaurant here in Singapore I will always order it for dessert. Not sure if it because of the memory or I’ve learn to like it !!! same goes to inangit with tutong…I am longing for it :)

    Jun 10, 2010 | 9:06 am

  6. ziggy says:

    you are a genius. you don’t need to claim it, it’s yours! fantastic. and to think about it, you dear sir, put a face on filipino food bloggers in the world (although, ironically you always cut your face off in the pictures). can you be like my relative or something?

    Jun 10, 2010 | 9:25 am

  7. Footloose says:

    They are called putu-maya in Bataan if you intend to serve it as is with grated coconut and sugar. It’s inangit if you cooked it with a lot less liquid and are going to roll and wrap it in banana leaf and steam it further as suman. As I have often asserted, the combination of our manga and our suman (which is not sweet and ever so lightly salted) is a much more felicitous paring than what the Thai’s made popular but then again you live with what’s available.

    Jun 10, 2010 | 9:42 am

  8. Jen Laceda says:

    It’s hard to find mangoes here in Canada like the ones we get in the Philippines. At best, Mexican mangoes come a close second. If we’re lucky, we also get Mangoes from Thailand :) Love mangga and love suman. Together? Yum!

    Jun 10, 2010 | 12:59 pm

  9. Jack Hammer says:

    Really the Mango can be used in all stages of its growth…from the small mango without fibrous seed to pickle in brine or hot achara spices, to raw mango in curries and chutneys to half ripe just boiled and eaten along with the skin, to fully ripe and in all its glory with Vanilla Ice-cream, the uses it can be put to is really varied.

    Therefore in Asia and wherever Asians live around the world it is truly the “King of Fruits”. And the Crown Prince could be the juicy tree-ripened Peach, which is the King in Europe.

    Jun 10, 2010 | 1:52 pm

  10. Isa Garchitorena says:

    Oh my god, that sounds amazing! How about a small scoop of premium vanilla ice cream on the side? By the way, I am 20 minutes from my first ever homemade ensaimada from Marc’s hinayupak na recipe – very exciting!

    Jun 10, 2010 | 1:54 pm

  11. moni says:

    MM, before I read your blog today, I had planned to cook a variant of puto maya and I have mangoes from Cebu in the fridge. Then I read your post and It’s hard to resist your sticky rice with grilled mango. Yum. I’ll try it after work today. Ang low-carb diet nato MM, madaut jud!

    Jun 10, 2010 | 2:23 pm

  12. mojito drinker says:

    sounds good. have you ever tried bananas foster from new orleans? butter, brown sugar, sliced bananas and rum (that’s been lighted in the sauce pan) over ice cream. your recipe makes me think it’d be interesting to try mangoes foster…

    Jun 10, 2010 | 2:52 pm

  13. Mom-Friday says:

    Suman at Mangga anytime! Try it with a drizzle / spoon full of good coco jam for a super combo!

    Jun 10, 2010 | 3:55 pm

  14. ycae says:

    Grilled Mango.
    Really pushing the food boundary to beyond. Bravo…!
    The idea of sugar on sweet fruits is surely screaming diabetes. This is definitely something you can’t have every other day. But to die for, I’m sure.

    Jun 10, 2010 | 4:07 pm

  15. atbnorge says:

    I and my friends grilled mangoes (and dragonflies, hahaha) when we were kids and ate them with suman sa ibos in Antipolo. I remember my friend’s mother made mango compote
    with ice shavings and milk served with biko, it was lovely!…This post evokes a lot of memories.

    Jun 10, 2010 | 7:17 pm

  16. zena says:

    OMG! I really should quit reading posts like these coz they make me soo food-homesick.

    Jun 10, 2010 | 7:35 pm

  17. millet says:

    wow, i want to have some of those right now. puto maya is one of the carbo loads i can’t resist, and the grilled mango takes it waaaaay over the top.

    mojito drinker, yes, mangoes foster with excellent philippine rum, or maybe that mango liqeur that everybody’s raving about.

    Jun 10, 2010 | 10:12 pm

  18. JunB says:

    How bout trying mango turon?

    Jun 11, 2010 | 12:12 am

  19. jack says:

    the first picture looks too good to eat! I love eating mangoes but I haven’t tasted grilled mango yet in my life. I’ll try that definitely and with the brown sugar on top :)

    Jun 11, 2010 | 12:51 am

  20. roland says:

    perfect! so timely for us here in TX

    Jun 11, 2010 | 12:52 am

  21. Joy says:

    That looks wonderful. I always eat suman with mango. It just seem so nature to eat together.

    Jun 11, 2010 | 1:35 am

  22. Beng says:

    Jun 11, 2010 | 3:24 am

  23. benjie says:

    nanay call this PUTO MAYA. sometimes served with linga and grated coconut mixed sugar.Its a nice idea to serve with grilled mango. I’ll try this for sure……

    Jun 11, 2010 | 5:25 am

  24. betty q. says:

    Hey Yel….are you there? Try this for your mahal sa buhay!….For a much more chi-chi presentation…try this next time for your diiner party, mga Mrs and Yel!….make the suman or puto-maya and also make the purple suman just like MM’s purple biko. then cut the purple biko ( only inch thick and no more than one inch thick) the same diameter as base of your timabale mould….

    OK, Footloose…try saying this 10 times!…PUT YOUR PUTO-MAYA (holy, tongue twister!) into the timbale (lightly greased with coconut oil), and top it with the purple biko. Unmould onto plater and cut the grilled mango and fan it out and put your suman/puto maya in the center…then splash thinned out coconut jam in a squirt bottle or even a baby spoon and splash across the plate a thin line in one swift motion. Do I make sense?….it will look better on a square dessert plate and the lines perpendicular in one corner…

    Jun 11, 2010 | 9:13 am

  25. Divine G. says:

    MM, we usually just put coconut milk and sugar to the sticky rice no ginger. What do you do with the ginger, sliced or grated , what is the quantity and when do you put it. There are lots of mangoes sold here as Manila Mangoes but it really came from Mexico but it’s better than nothing so I’ll try the grilled mangoes with brown sugar.

    Also, congratulations to our Chicago Blackhawks for winning the Stanley Cup after 49 years.
    There will be a parade tomorrow starting at 10:30 a.m.

    Jun 11, 2010 | 9:37 am

  26. Betchay says:

    Welcome Back Betty Q! We missed you!

    Jun 11, 2010 | 10:05 am

  27. joyce says:

    what a cool idea!!

    Jun 11, 2010 | 10:51 am

  28. ogz5 says:

    Arghhhhhh!!!! I want those!!!!!! *drools*

    Jun 11, 2010 | 11:58 am

  29. Jaja says:

    wow wow wow!!!! I can’t wait to try this out!!! I’m waiting for my share of mangoes harvested from our farm. Mom will be sending me several kilos so I have enough to experiment on. Thanks MM for the idea!!! :D

    Jun 11, 2010 | 4:49 pm

  30. betty q. says:

    Divine G: Please bear in mind Mexican Ataulfo mangoes which is what we can get here too has a diffferent texture than the Cebu mangoes. The Mexican ones has a more solid or firm texture. Therefore when grilling them you might want to brush lightly the cheeks with melted buttr…grill on high to get the grill criss cross marks it will take only a few seconds on high heat. THen crank your grill on medium to low heat sprinkle with your brown sugar and cover the grill

    MM your grilled mango/suman idea inspired me to do this for this week-end…..stuffed puto-maya! I did a proto-type and it turned out great! I made the white ones and the 2 toned ones as well. After making the suman, I shaped them into suares wth a well? in the center. Then I scooped the grilled mangoes into the well and covered with another thin square of the puto maya and shaped them. …some I sprinkled with sugar/linga and some I drizzled with coconut jam and wrapped them in banana leaves and tied them with banana strips like tamales.

    Hay, naku! I think you should try it next time you go to the beach!

    Jun 11, 2010 | 10:27 pm

  31. jojo ojeda says:

    MM, your visual section has improved a lot. i feel like eating the pics from your site. galeng. i salute you………

    Jun 12, 2010 | 12:44 am

  32. barang says:

    B MM/Betty Q, can you pls email a recipe to make the light and purple suman. I am thinking of experimenting this weekend since I have a box of atulfo mangoes. What rice so – use for the suman? Salamat!

    Jun 12, 2010 | 1:03 am

  33. Pilar says:

    great! mango cream caramel! we have to take advantage while mangoes are in season!

    Jun 12, 2010 | 8:43 pm

  34. Fards says:

    I am mangoed out. I have bought 4 dozens and am to the last 6. Ate all by myself as no one here to share them.Not in one seating, though. Did the puto with a little purple rice and came out really good. Pero cannot make myself to cook another batch as am suppose to be on a diet(low cholesterol). Manila honey mangoes (Ataulfo, et al) are close enough to the Cebu mangoes. Might try grilling.
    Bettyq, welcome back.

    Jun 13, 2010 | 7:24 am

  35. u8mypinkcookies says:

    wow… this is such a treat! :D

    Jun 14, 2010 | 10:07 am

  36. iya says:

    i like grilled mangoes with putong puti! ang sarap naman nito!

    Jun 14, 2010 | 9:57 pm

  37. kroozer says:


    Jun 18, 2010 | 9:31 am

  38. ikai says:

    order suman for only $5/dozen…. for those who live near VB, Virginia, USA only…email us at sumanbatangas@yahoo.com for more info

    Jul 29, 2010 | 5:49 am

  39. WinkyB says:

    MM, have you tried adding wild rice or tapol to the suman? The suman looks so ordinary for me so I tried it with some wild rice since I have no idea where to find tapol here. The suman, with your amazing grilled mango plus sikwate, is a winner! Bar none.

    Oct 14, 2010 | 4:56 pm

  40. R. Ferrer says:

    Ataulfo mangoes from Mejico normally start trickling into New Jersey mid March and how I wish I didn’t come across your wonderful idea of grilling ripe mangoes this time of the year. I have about four months of waiting to taste the goodness of grilled mango! In the meantime I would like to imagine grilling it about six inches from the fire topped already with dark brown sugar. When the first sign of bubble bursts off the top, remove mango from fire unto a metal pan to be torched a la creme brulee.

    Nov 18, 2010 | 12:58 pm

  41. Raechelle says:

    I saw this post while searching for a good puto maya recipe. I had some not-so-sweet Mexican mangoes from the grocery store. So I tried your grill mango technique. I noticed that yours were grilled using the direct heat method. I used indirect grilling – hot coals on one side of the grill, mangos on the other side. They turned out fantastic! Thanks for the idea!

    Mar 13, 2011 | 9:48 am


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