Malagkit (sticky rice) Cooking Contest 2012

A gathering of families, Filipino tradition and diversified cultures.

By Bianca Gantner and Arlene Castañeda

On November 10, 2012 the first Viennese Malagkit Cooking Contest took place in the „Pfarre Zum Göttlichen Erlöser“ Burghardtgasse 30a in the 20th District of Vienna.

Organized by the Sentro ng Kultura at Wika ng Austria at Pilipinas, the afternoon event was attended by multi-cultural families from Austria, Filipinos from Italy, Germany, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, the Philippines, Serbia, and other nationalities. „Malagkit Contest 2012 has brought together both young and old who have come to enjoy a long preserved tradition in the Philippines“, said Clarissa Cabauatan, the project leader.

Oryza glutinosa or Malagkit rice symbolizes family closeness. It is widely used in making native delicacies such as bibingka, bilo-bilo, champorado, puto, suman, etc.  However, it is the art of mixing the ingredients that enhances the taste. An expression of adaptability and openness of Filipinos. While the contestants eagerly put their last finishing touch to their sticky rice dishes – made of at least 1 kg of glutinous rice, coconut milk, sugar and other chosen ingredients, parents and children enjoyed funny games. Afterwards the judges carried out their duties assiduously and awarded points to the seven participating dishes.

Judging the entries was done by an international jury (consisting of one Austrian, one Austro-Pinoy and one Peruvian) and the audience. The criteria for the evaluation: up to 50 points for overall taste (appropriateness, balance, flavours, effective combinations), up to 25 points for originality/uniqueness (creativity in application, flavours, usage of products and pairings) and up to 25 points for presentation/appearance (arrangement, plate attractiveness).

Then the buffet was opened for the audience to select their favourite recipe, though the sight of the mouth-watering dishes has distracted their attention at the beginning in their task to assess.

After pampering the enthusiastic crowd with tasty and satiable dishes, Grandmaster Rico D. Gomez and his students of Sip Sun Do gave a Filipino Martial Arts performance. Children and adults alike were made to participate and show off their self-defense skills.

Culminating the event was the awarding of the prizes, where every participant got a consolation prize. The winning recipe of the Malagkit Sticky Rice Contest 2012 was the big surprise of the Malagkit showcase:

„Viennese Streusel Malagkit“ won the favour of the jury as well as the voting of the audience. Tanja Friedrich, an Austrian, has topped the Filipino native suman, bibingka and others. What’s more, Friedrich’s very original recipe – a mixture of Malagkit, apples, gata (coconut milk) and schlagobers (whipped cream) perfectly captured Sentro’s aim namely, to facilitate cultural exchange between Austria and the Philippines. Friedrich received a gift certificate for spa and wellness for two, sponsored by Shofah Spa & Wellness.

Maria Negreiros, member of the jury, says „Thank you for the lovely evening!!! I find it so great all the efforts you are making for your community!!! Keep up the spirit!!!“ The audience enjoyed a really entertaining and outstanding culinary experience – a gathering that bonded and stuck families of various origins and cultures – and is looking forward to participating in Sentro’s events and activities in 2013, among others the annual Linggo ng Kultura at Wika summer camp, tutorial lessons in German and Mathematics, lectures and international folk dance, music language and literary festivals.