Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Heavenly Champorado

In order to pronounce the title of this blog, you should say it with a Spanish, Mexican or Latin American accent. Champorado (pronounced as CHAM- POH-RAH-DOH) is a rice porridge flavored with chocolate, sweetened with sugar and finished with evaporated milk. It is sometimes served with deep-fried salted fish (called tuyo) on top. It is also called Rice Chocolate Pudding or Rice Chocolate Porridge. But I think Champorado sounds even better. This is usually served for breakfast or as an afternoon snack (called merienda).

When I saw a champorado recipe from Olive of Latest Recipes (more Filipino recipes on her site), I thought of making my own. I was born and raised in the Philippines but never even made this myself. I honestly couldn’t remember having this as a child. It would be embarrassing to say that I’ve never had it in my entire life. I probably had the instant champorado that comes in boxes. But I don’t think dad ever serve this to us. I was just thinking about it for a few days, and there was never a memory of dad giving me this.

There are only two main ingredients you need: the sticky rice and the chocolate. We call the sticky rice “malagkit”, it literally means sticky. And this sticky rice and the ground form is the base of many Filipino desserts. The chocolate is called tablea (blocks of cocoa powder or local chocolate chips). You can definitely use unsweetened cocoa powder, the Mexican chocolates or even other dark chocolates if you cannot find these ethnic chocolates from the Philippines. The two minor ingredients are sugar and the milk which are the finishing touches. I like muscovado sugar or panocha (similar to palm sugar) for their caramel flavor. Some people use brown sugar. Evaporated milk adds richness but condensed milk is sometimes used. You may use whole milk or cream but the evaporated milk is the best. If you are lactose intolerant or have milk allergies, you can use coconut cream/milk for this.

I find it odd that this is served with deep-fried salted fish. It’s probably the salty-sweet flavor that Filipinos love. But for this, I’m using unrefined sea salt. Remember that salt brings out the flavor of everything even in sweet foods. Mom adds a dash of salt in every fruit she eats. I always recommend unrefined sea salt. No iodized table salt please because it has a metallic flavor and it ruins the flavor of the dish. Besides, unrefined sea salt still has almost all the minerals intact. I am still looking for a local supplier on unrefined sea salt. That way, I’m supporting Filipino livelihoods instead of buying imported salt from other countries. Of course, if someone gives me a collection of specialty salts, I would gladly receive them.

Aside from serving this for breakfast or as a snack, they are best served on a rainy day, when you need emotional uplifting or when it’s almost Christmas. And for as long as the weather is cool, champorado is always welcome. It also does help if you sit on the floor at the corner of your room with the bowl of your hand and the spoon on the other. You could also sit on the couch cross-legged facing the window while eating the champorado. And all is well with the world even if the world is against you.

Here's the recipe for Champorado at Rouxbe Online Cooking School Test Kitchen. You might also like this comforting Rice Pudding by Steve Ellis. Enjoy.

Olive, thanks for the inspiration.


  1. Champorado with deep fried salted fish? Wahh! How does that combination work? I must try with the fish! Looks so yummy and will work as a dessert too :)

  2. Wow, this looks great! I wish I had a bowl of this in front of me right now. Beautiful photos and a great recipe!!

  3. looks great and interesting. Still trying to imagine how it tastes esp with salted fish. But it does look gorgeous & delicious.

  4. Apart from this interesting dessert, i also see in this post your willingness to help and to give. Hope you will soon find your local supplier on unrefined sea salt.

  5. OMG, that looks so good! The ultimate comforting treat! Beautiful!



  6. This looks so good! I thought it was the black rice when I first looked at the title, but I guess that's thai. I love that dish, and I am sure I would love this too, I'll have to look for this rice and chocolate next time I am at the asian grocery.

  7. what great timing divina! i was just thinking of cooking a pot this afternoon, but the rain came too early :) so maybe another rainy afternoon and i'll get inspired again to make some...i also use muscovado sugar and pinch of rock salt to bring out the sweetness of the tablea...mmm...i can smell the cocoa now :) and receiving a nice box of sea salt would be nice too!

  8. @ Penny, Mary - It's intriguing for some people It's usually serve with "tuyo", the salted fish. I don't have that particular fish today so I substituted salt instead. You will love this one.

    @ tokyoterrace - thanks Rachel. I would like to share this with you.

    @ TasteHongkong - thank you. I really do hope so too.

    @ Rosa'sYummyYums - Thanks. It is comforting on a cool or rainy day, even on a sunny day like today.

    @ Southern Grace Gourmet. You're right, the black rice is from Thai usually serve with coconut. You can even use the Mexican chocolate which would be great too. Have fun with your camera.

    @ Mom-Friday - Haha. I've been wanting to do this since last week. I will have to make it again for the other people in the family. Thanks.

  9. hi Divine :)

    You finally did it..and WOW! your post is beautiful, now why can't I say/write/take pictures like that? ;)

    .I've never tried eating champorado with salted fish, that's new to me although we did with plain rice porridge, we sprinkle flakes of salted fish and sometimes with maho (powdered beef jerky).

    Thanks again.. I think I'm crying LOL ;D

  10. I love this. Chocolate sticky rice. hmmm so yummy. The substitute version with coconut milk sounds great too. I'm not sure about the deep fried salted fish. Don't get me wrong, I like salted fish. I guess I have to be more open-minded:) In fact, I like plain rice porridge with salted fish. So this is not that far off:)

  11. all I can say is wow! and your photos look so crisp, vibrant and best of all so delicious. I must find champorado and make myself a bowl of this comforting goodness

  12. The champorado sounds wonderful. I'd probably skip the fish :)
    This is my first time on your blog. I love your tagline! "Vibrant Food, Radiant Life"

  13. Mmmm - I am not so much into rice puddingy things but this looks amazing! Not sure about the salted fish combo....

  14. Oh, man, does this look good! Fish? I'd serve this as dessert! YUM!

  15. We have a drink in Mexico called Champurrado, but it is made with corn. It is chocolate falvoured "atole". I've never seen this version with rice but it looks good ;) I'll have to try it.

  16. This really looks delicious. I love the idea of any kind of rice pudding and this would be amazing.

  17. Do you know how much I love, love, love champorado?! Well, I love the stuff! One of my friends (of course from the Philippines) made it for me and I fell in love with the dish! Oh, I can't wait to try your recipe! :D

  18. Rice pudding in any way shape or form is my favourite dessert. Add chocolate, and I'm totally sold. Salted fish however is another story!

  19. I miss champorado so much! I used to make it from the boxed mixes but now, I plan to make it from scratch. Masarap!

  20. this looks fantastic! i'd call it chocolate rice porridge, it sounds more edgy, don't you think?. ^^

  21. that's my kind of dessert!!! sweet, chewy and chocolate!!!
    btw, who cares the pronunciation! i just needa eat it.

  22. That looks and sounds absolutely divine! I like regular rice pudding but this one really takees it up a notch! :)

  23. @ Olive, thank you for inspiring me to do this. You have to smile and laugh for me.

    @ CheapAppetite - Thank you. I love salted fish with plain rice too.

    @ Diane - Thank you.

    @ Jessie - thank you. I appreciate that.

    @ Nurit - Okay, you can skip the fish. Thanks you and thanks for visiting.

    @ eatlivetravelwrite - It's something new to try for other people. My brother was surprised too about the salted fish.

    @ Kate at Serendipity - Haha. It can be served as a dessert too. I would probably serve it with vanilla or coconut ice cream or some Greek yogurt, and omitting the evaporated milk.

    @ Klipbook Studio - I've heard of the Mexican version which I would love to try as well.

    @ Kelsey B. - Thank you. I love it too.

    @ Kamran Siddiqi - Really? Which means you ate this first before I did? Try it again soon.

    @ The Klutzy Cook - Hahaha. I do understand the weird combination. But I'm sure you will love this without the salted fish.

    @ Tangled Noodle - It's about time to make your own. That's true. It's masarap.

    @ Short and Bald - edgy, yeah, chocolate is edgy. For you, we'll call it chocolate rice pudding.

    @ lululu - you're right. Just eat it.

    @ Lorriane - Thanks Lorraine. With chocolate, it become different.

  24. a admirable post!and chocolate...yummmy!

  25. I love rice pudding and with chocolate is even better. Looks yummy, nice pictures.

  26. my favorite comfort food!!!! and yes with the salted fish!! yummmm..!

  27. @ alison - thank you.

    @ Anna - thank you Anna. Can't go wrong with chocolates.

    @ raquel - I'm sure it brings back childhood memories.

  28. i got hungry just looking at that pic! omg! yummy yummy!my aunt makes champorado with coconut milk, though im not particularly crazy about that flavor i still think its mighty tasty!
    when i was younger i used to put milo on my oatmeal so that i eat healthy is what my grandma used to say and i cal it champorado... i call any chocolate soup-y concoction champorado.

    i make it once a month, though the tablea bought from the filipino store is not up to par with the ones we used in the philippines, but i do ask people coming back from the islands to bring me back some. and then... heaven...

    by the way.,.,..,tnx for the recipe and other comments..for my project....



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