Hopia is a Filipino dessert that is typically made with mung bean, but is also made with ube (purple yam) or baboy (pork, which I found nasty even in my pre-vegan days). Hopia is very possibly my favorite Filipino dessert. The only thing that makes traditional hopia non-vegan is the egg wash that is brushed on the pastry before it is baked. I bought some yellow mung beans and decided to try making my own hopia. I’m very much not thrilled with how it turned out so I won’t go into specifics on ingredients, but I’m posting this because I like seeing how my cooking skills improve (or not) and want to learn from my mistakes. Someday, in the next 40 years or so, I will get over the trauma of this experience and try making it again.
First, I got my mung beans and soaked them for about 4 hours. Three hours in, I started working on my dough. I despise flour and dough and proportions and mixing.
Two doughs are required for hopia. Pictured above is Dough #1. It’s flour and oil, proportioned and mixed into loose crumbs. I honestly don’t know if this is how Dough #1 was supposed to turn out. Dough #2 was more traditional. By this time, I was so tired and annoyed (it took two tries to get both doughs right) that I didn’t bother to take photos. Basically, you’re supposed to flatten Dough #2, sprinkle it with Dough #1, and then roll it into a log. Uh, yeah. That didn’t happen. I just ended up mixing the two doughs together.
Four hours passed. I drained and rinsed the mung beans (yes, the water turns yellow).
Then, I put the mung beans in a pot, added enough water to cover it, and brought it to a boil, mixing until the beans got soft and it started to get pasty. Keep an eye on the beans!
I took the beans out, added salt, and then tried mooshing them into a paste. That did NOT work, so I put them in a food processor, which did the trick. I added the agave nectar and then microwaved the filling to dry it out. I dried it out until it was about the consistency of mashed potatoes. I thought I was a genius, but I had to keep in mind that I would still be baking this; my filling ended up being pretty dry. Note: I could have just eaten this with a spoon at this point.
I took an ice cream scooper and formed the filling into balls so that I would know how many piece to divide my dough into.
Now it was time to make the pastry. In theory, you’re supposed to flatten the dough into a very thin layer, place the filling on top, and then pick up the rest of the dough to cover it up in a ball and flatten it. I tried! They did turn out pretty, in my humble opinion. I brushed the tops of the hopia with almond milk and then put them in the oven.
Here are the finished hopia, done and baked. I added some almond slivers to a few of them, and put almond slivers on top to indicate so. The hopia were OK – the filling tasted sweet enough but could have used more agave nectar. I’m reluctant to try stevia and I even have some reservations about agave nectar, but I didn’t want to use regular sugar.
Coincidentally, my Dad showed up with real hopia, so here’s a comparison. It’s a little hard to tell, but the real hopia has a flakier pastry and yellower filling.
Anyone have any advice for my next try? I am completely baking-challenged! Thankfully, I know an awesome lady who makes wonderful hopia, so I will happily eat hers for the time being (removing the top later to avoid the egg wash).
I hopia have a great day! –Melissa
They look very nice and I’m kind of fascinated by the process! Keep trying!
Wow, this post brought back memories. We ate those at my house quite frequently growing up too. They are yummy. It’s crazy, but I am also trying to revisit childhood foods that my mom made when I was a wee one and am finding that most are already vegan!
Yes, I know what you mean! A lot of Filipino desserts are vegan as-is or can easily be veganized. I definitely find comfort in that.
try milk-free plant-butter (is that what u call it ?) instead of just oil ? also maybe putting linseed-slime (i know ! just poil em for 10min and only use the water) as egg-replacer into the dough ? 🙂
btw i really want these again ! my dad only buy food from either german stores (Lidl . .) and chinese stores, so when i was smaller we used to have these (and sweet pink dumblings) all the time ! but i recall the hopia wif yellow inside reeally freaked me out, and u could never tell if they had the brow or the yellow in em – so surprisesurprise, haha ;b
That’s a really good recipe! Well, if you’d wish for a suggestion for a more yellowish filling, why not try adding a little bit of turmeric powder? We’ve used it on some desserts that my family makes, like cassava cake and a bunch of others. But I suggest put little by little, because too much might overpower the taste.