Did you know that “Maruya,” an authentic Filipino delicacy made from banana of the Cardava variety, was included as one of the foods being served to the guests and diplomats during newly elected Philippine president Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s inauguration last June 30 at Malacanang palace?
Although banana is not the national fruit of the Philippines, I think there’s something in Maruya that is more Filipino in both the concrete and abstract sense of it. Bananas, especially the Cardava variety, grow in abundance in almost every part of the country. This variety is one of the most important banana cultivars in the Philippines.
Nutrition wise, it has the highest nutrients compared with other banana fruit varieties growing in the Philippines. It is very high in potassium which could help to regulate body circulatory system by way of delivering oxygen to the brain. It is also a good source of vitamins and minerals and natural energy.
My toddler is now on his second week of a two-hour-a-day Daycare school. It’s only a walking distance from where we lived. He usually had cracker biscuits, cookies, and a fruit juice sachet for snack. Sometimes, he would be having a cupcake, a sandwich, and a chocolate milk drink.
I know these foods contain some nutrients but they aren’t the most nutritious. In fact, some of these foods are even packed with high sugar level contents, preservatives, additives, and artificial colors and flavors. These foods are easy to acquire though. You can buy them almost everywhere. It saves you time preparing and cooking.
But when I saw the fruits of the Cardava banana that freely grow in our backyard ripened, I had a bright idea. I would like to cook my son a very Filipino snack called “Maruya.” It is a snack most popular to school campuses then and even these days.
It reminds me of my childhood years where I used to buy Maruya during class recess for only twenty-five centavos a piece. Today, it is sold at ten pesos each.
So here’s how to cook a Maruya:
Five bananas (Cardava variety) already peeled off of skin, or up to how many you would like to, sliced into halves
Powdered sugar (preferably brown)
Butter or cooking oil
- Heat oil or butter in a pan.
- Deep-fry sliced bananas until they become brownish in color.
- Add powdered brown sugar.
- Stir until the sugar melts and mixes well with the bananas.
- Put them in a container that has net to drain the oil.
- Put in a plate and serve.
By the way, before I forget, this is still banana related topic I would like to be sharing with you. It’s about a very rare food I once tasted with bananas as one of its ingredients. I say “rare” because a schnitzel is usually using meat, either a pork, beef, turkey, mutton, veal, or chicken, as its main ingredient.
It was introduced by a friend of mine way back in college. But what may be rare to me may not be rare to you or anyone else. Maybe some of you have, at least, already had eaten this one or tried cooking at home. Anyways, here’s what my friend called “Banana Schnitzel.”
Six bananas (already peeled off of skin) sliced into halves
One egg, beaten
Oil for deep-frying
Warm Cream Sauce:
Four egg yolks
One half cup evaporated milk
Three tablespoons of powdered sugar (either brown or white)
- Sprinkle sliced bananas with rhum; chill in the fridge for fifteen minutes.
- Dip in beaten eggs and roll in breadcrumbs, and then deep-fry in hot oil.
- Drain and place in absorbent paper.
- Just before serving, pour over warm cream sauce prepared by mixing together ingredients on top of double boiler and cook until thickened.