We were complaining of the banana que being sold across the street when I was reminded of my grandmother, Mamay. (“Mamay” is a jumble of “mama” or mother and “may” or old/mature lady.) She used to cook banana que and its variants like turon and ginamos when we were still young.
I must admit I am not fond of eating cooked bananas other than those cooked with adobo. But everytime Mamay cooks a banana que, I am always enticed to eat. It was only in the past few days when I found why — and this is courtesy of the banana que seller across the street.
Ang paratinda sa ibong kan kalye minagamit ki sobra na ka-hinog na kalibo/saba. Dahil commercialized, an ginagamit pang batag su hinog sa pirit asin bako pa masyadong gurang. Resulta, bako masiram saka madali pang mahulog hale sa pantuhog. Dagdag pa an sobrang tamis na sabayan mo lang ki kapeng barako na warang asukar, solve na. Pero si Mamay, ginagamit niya an batag na tamang-tama sana an pagka-hinog o kaya ubal (half-ripe) pa. Pag hinog ng maray, ginigibo niya ining “ginamos”… something that is unknown to our banana que seller.
The past few days, we were given half-riped bananas by our neighbor. Well, we cooked excellent banana ques so we stopped being dependent from the seller across the street. Lately, however, the leftover bananas became over-riped so we thought of a way until I remember Mamay’s “ginamos”. Ginamos is a Bikol-Legazpi term for a delicacy composed of mashed ripe (usually over-riped) bananas mixed with rice flour, water and sugar, then fried. I think the root word is “gamos” which refers to “mashed and mixed foods or items”. It’s rarely used, though. Shall we say its a term that’s slowly becoming extinct?
I am not sure about measurements but maybe for those interested, this can be determined by understanding the purpose of each ingredient. The main ingredient, of course, is banana specifically saba (or sabah?) called in Bikol as Kalibo. That’s the focus of the delicacy. The end result, therefore, should showcase the taste of the banana. Then we have rice flour. Its main purpose is just to ensure that the other ingredients stick together specially when fried. Too much flour might ruin the taste or overpower the sweetness of the banana. Another is sugar, which is to enrich also the taste of the flour. Then, oil for deep frying. After mixing the banana, rice flour and sugar, the mixture is shaped according to one’s desires (usually, palm sized), then deep fried until the color is brown.
As an experiment and for lack of rice flour, we used wheat flour, sugar, mashed over ripe bananas and egss. The result: Ginamos a la Pancake!