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Pinoy Meryenda: Suman or Biko

Suman is to the Ilonggos as what biko is to Tagalogs and other places. So don't be surprised if you're given this malagkit rice specialty instead of the one wrapped in coconut leaves which is commonly called ibos in this part of the country.
Here's a simple recipe for Suman or Biko.

  • 3 cups glutinous rice
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2-3 spoons butter
  • 3 calamansi peels
How to cook Suman/Biko
  1. Cook the rice in 1 cup coconut milk, 2 cups water and butter. Just cook the rice the usual way
  2. In a pan, boil the coconut milk and brown sugar on a low fire. 
  3. After it boiled, add calamansi peels then simmer for a minute or two, then remove from the mixture. 
  4. Add the cooked rice and stir to mix evenly.
  5. Cover and cook in low heat for 5 minutes or until the rice evenly absorbs the coconut-sugar cream.
You can add more topping using thickened boiled coconut milk and brown sugar. You can also top it with latik.


  1. do you only use 1 cup of coconut milk in making the sauce (latik)?

  2. yes. only a cup. its already enough unless you're making a very big batch

  3. If I cook a big batch lets say 8 cups rice how many cups of coconut milk do I need? Should I just double the ingredients; maybe 2 cups coconut milk and 4 cups of water?

  4. yes that's what we do most of the time and its more of a trial and error too.

  5. this is the recipe that I was looking for a suman, thanks for posting this

  6. Ano po ang pwdeng e substitute sa calamansi?

  7. hi therese
    calamansi peels are just to counter balance the "umay factor"
    its not really a main ingredient

  8. What is Calamansi peel?

  9. Can I make the ingredients without the calamansi peel and it won't affect the taste.

  10. yes. you can make suman/biko without the calamansi peels. sometimes we also use ginger