Tuesday, May 1, 2012


When we talk about BOHOL, we think of Chocolate Hills, Peanut Kisses, Tarsier and of course, the CALAMAY!!!

What is a CALAMAY?
Kalamay, also spelled Calamay, is a sticky sweet delicacy that is popular in many regions of the Philippines. It is made of coconut milkbrown sugar, and groundglutinous rice. They can also be flavored with margarinepeanut butter, or vanillaKalamay can be eaten alone but is usually used as a sweetener for a number ofFilipino desserts and beverages.[1] It is similar to the Chinese Nian gao (also known as tikoy in the Philippines) but is sweeter and more viscous.

Kalamay is made by extracting coconut milk from grated coconuts twice. Glutinous rice is added to the first batch of coconut milk and the mixture is ground into a paste. Brown sugar is added to the second batch of coconut milk and boiled for several hours to make latík. The mixture of ground glutinous rice and coconut milk is then poured into the latík and stirred until the consistency becomes very thick. It can be served hot or at room temperature especially when eaten with other dishes. Viscous Kalamay are often served cooled to make it less runny and easier to eat.

Of course, the Calamay is traditionally packed in an empty coconut shell, with a red band in the midportion of the coconut shell.

BUT, modern preparations have now given a new look to the Calamay.

Here are more trivia about the Calamay and its variations in other parts of the Philippines!
Types of Kalamay (from Wikipedia)

There are many variations and types of kalamay. Kalamay can be divided roughly into two types: the syrupy kind used in conjunction with other dishes, and the gummy chewy kind which is more expensive and usually eaten on its own.[2]
Varieties include the following:
  • Bohol Kalamay - Kalamay from the island of Bohol can vary from extremely sweet to mildly sweet. It is distinctive for being sold inside halved smooth coconut shells (the mesocarp of coconuts, locally known as bagol or paya). These containers are then sealed shut with a characteristic red crepe paper (papel de japon).[2] This type of packaging is known as Kalamay-hati (literally 'Half Kalamay').[3]
  • Baguio Kalamay - a type of Kalamay from Baguio City, Philippines. It is also known as Sundot Kulangot (literally 'Picked Snot') because of its consistency. It is sweetened with molasses which adds to its color. It is uniquely packed into halved pitogo (Sago Palm of the genus Cycas) shells and sealed with red crepe paper in a similar manner to the Bohol Kalamay. It is the smallest known traditional packaging of Kalamay. They are sold in bundles, several of these kalamay balls are nestled inside split bamboo and tied with a string.[3]
  • Iloilo Kalamay - Kalamay from the province of Iloilo and the island of Negros. It is thicker in consistency than other types of Kalamay. The city of San Enriquecelebrates a Kalamay festival.[4]
  • Candon Kalamay - Kalamay from Candon City, Ilocos Sur.[3] It is sold wrapped in banana leaves or in coconut shells, though modern packaging uses polystyrenecontainers wrapped in cellophane. Candon City also celebrates a Kalamay Festival.
  • Nilubyan or Iniruban- a kind of Kalamay made from pounded green rice. It originates from Camiling, Tarlac in the Northern Philippines.[3]
  • Mindoro Kalamay - a version of Kalamay from the island of Mindoro. It usually contains grated coconut and is flavored with peanut butter or vanilla.[3]  

Kalamay, in many Visayan languages (particularly Hiligaynon), is synonymous with 'Sugar'.[4] Its production has been known since during the Spanish colonization of the Philippines.

Kalamay is a popular pasalubong (the Filipino tradition of a homecoming gift). They are often eaten alone, directly from the packaging.[2] Kalamay is also used in a variety of traditional Filipino dishes as a sweetener.[1] This includes Suman and Bukayo. It can be added to beverages as well, like coffee, milk, or hot chocolate.

Come let us grab a CALAMAY!


  1. Calamay is very memorable to me. I once had a yaya from Bohol and when she went back to Zambo from a vacation there, she brought us back a calamay. I was still in grade school then and it was my first time to see and taste it. Loved it so much. I haven't had it since then but I still remember how it tastes like :)

    - Mich of Mich Eats and Shops

  2. This was the prime pasalubong when I was younger... but I guess, these days people prefer to bring the peanut kisses because it is lighter and you can give more people!

  3. I always enjoy calamay with bread. Yum! :-)

  4. grabe sobrang kunat nito. Talagang dumidikit sa ngipin. Bawal ang may pustiso dito. hehehe

  5. Oh, I didn't know Bohol has the kalamay on bao shells as well. We used to get these at Candon, Ilocos Sur (my dad is from Ilocos).

  6. I haven't tried this when we went to Bohol. Sayang! But at least this is one of the reasons why I should come back! :)