Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Delicious Maja Mais

Everyone loves desserts. Especially my Dad. He has quite a sweet tooth and there is nothing that makes him smile wider than something deliciously sweet for dessert. 

Last Sunday (September 16, 2012), I found myself home alone (nowhere near as adventurous as the movie, believe me) as my parents went to the village Gurdwara for sangrand (the first day of a new lunar month according to the Nanakshahi calendar). Being alone means I can safely wreak havoc (hehehe.... if there is such a thing) in the kitchen. I was free to cook whatever I wanted -- provided it was vegetarian and that I had all the ingredients available to me.
Delicious Maja Mais

I decided to make one of my most favorite Filipino desserts, Maja Mais. Maja mais is a pudding that is made from coconut milk, sweet corn kerels and cornstarch. The dessert is very simple to make and is quite tasty too.

To make Maja Mais, you will need to have 2 cups of coconut milk, 1/2 cup of cornstarch, 1/2 cup of sugar, and 3 tablespoons of sweet corn kernels. Sooooo simple.

However, nothing is ever so simple here in our teeny village. There is no way I could have access to fresh coconut let alone fresh coconut milk, unlike when we were living in Pasig. There I could have fresh coconut meat, fresh coconut water, and fresh grated coconut for extracting coconut milk or gata. Here, all I had (and believe me when I say that I felt like jumping with joy when I spotted it at the supermarket in town) was a box of powdered coconut milk. 

If you are using the same thing -- I mean powdered coconut milk -- then you need to remember that 3 tablespoons of the powdered coconut milk mixed with a cup of warm (not boiling) water makes 1 cup of thick coconut milk (commonly referred to in the Philippines as "kakang-gata"). Because you will need 2 cups of thick coconut milk to make maja mais, then, like me, you need to use 6 tablespoons of the coconut milk powder diluted in warm water. 

The secret is to ensure there are no lumps. Once you have the 2 cups coconut milk in a pot or a saucepan, add the 1/2 cup cornstarch and stir to make sure no lumps remain. Then add the 1/2 cup of sugar and the 3 tablespoons of sweet corn kernels. Place the pot or saucepan onto the stove over medium heat and keep stirring until the mixture thickens enough to form a thick film on the ladle.

Once thickened, remove the pot or saucepan from the heat and pour onto a tray or mold. Allow it to cool. 

Voila! Maja mais if ready for serving. 

In the Philippines, Maja Mais is usually decorated with latik which gives it an extra coconutty edge.

Anyway, I served the Maja Mais for dessert at dinner time and it was a hit! So much co that I had to keep Dad and our canine babies away from what was left so that we could enjoy it the next day, too.  My stepmother loved it, too. Not to mention I need to force myself to stay away from the fridge just to avoid temptation to devour the leftovers... lol.


As I was using canned sweet corn kernels, it meant I had to deal with the water that was in the can with the corn. I did not want to throw it away so instead of using 2 cups of warm water to dilute the coconut milk powder, I measured the sweet corn kernel can's water and then added enough warm water to it to make 2 cups in total. I then used that to dilute the coconut milk powder. I found that it gave the maja mais an extra bit of corn-y taste. (I hope I am making sense)

If you would like to know how to make latik; you can click on the following link:


Posted by: Bames Pabla
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