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Masareal: Cebu’s Nutty Pasalubong

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Masareal is a one of the best pasalubong in Cebu that contains ground peanuts mixed with sugar.

It is a popular Cebuano delicacy that originated in Mandaue City. It is usually served in a form of rectangular bars grouped together packed in white paper.

Masareal may come or from the combined words of masa (dough) and real (fine).

One of the famous brands is Didang’s Masareal. In the year 1914, Juliana “Didang” Suico ventured into the masareal business in Basak, Mandaue. It is said that "Didang" was a nickname given by her naughty brother to her during their younger years. Today, when you say “Didang” it is already an equivalent to the well-known masareal pasalubong brand.

Making masareal during the old times was a tedious process. Now, because of the special machines available you can produce a peanut dough that is smooth and even. It no longer contains gritty pebble-like lumps which presence does not give justice to the Spanish adjective “real” that means fine. It has also adapted changes including new shapes and sizes.

A bar of masareal is a favorite of not only kids but everyone who like peanuts and sweets.

Here’s a recipe that you can try in making your very own masareal.

Ingredients
  • 1 kilo peanuts
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
Procedure
  1. Boil unshelled peanuts in water. When done, cool. Shell and grind the peanuts fine.
  2. Prepare syrup of 1 cup white sugar and 1 cup water.
  3. Before the syrup thickens, add the ground peanuts, and keep on stirring until thick.
  4. Remove from fire, and pour over a thin baking sheet.
  5. Flatten the surface.
  6. Cut into 1 inch by 5 inches rectangular strips.
  7. Wrap each piece in white paper, if desired.

Masareal has only one week life-span, after which it becomes brittle and losses its sweet flavor.

Belle Piccio is the Visayas Editor of Choose Philippines. She goes the distance, literally and figuratively, be it when she's running or when she's pursuing a goal. She loves the S’s: Sun, Sand, Sea, Salad, Shake, Salsa, and Serenity!