5 Goan desserts to satisfy your sweet tooth in Goa
Bibinca, Godshe, Patoleo, Bolinhas…..sound strange enough. Combine any two of them together, say ‘Patoleo Bibinca!’ or “Godshe Bolinas!’ and you’ve got yourself a very Harry Potter sounding curse/incantation. Well, it couldn’t be any farther than what I’m talking about. Why, Goan desserts, of course! They’re not as popular as saying the vindaloo or the seafood, but anyone who’s been to Goa must’ve at least heard of bibinca which is the most popular. Tourism in Goa crests during the holiday season when these sweets are most popular.
These Goan desserts are most popular around Christmas, Easter and other Christian festivities when they’re made in most Goan homes. You may not find them in fancy places while eating out in Goa. You’ll find them in the authentic places run by Goans. They involve a lot of coconuts, coconut milk, jaggery and Goan red rice.
A sort of multi-layered cake made with eggs, flour, loads of coconut milk and a hint of nutmeg. This one is not confined to being a dessert. It can and is eaten at all times of the day, sometime rolled in a chapatti for breakfast. It can be served warm with a dollop of ice cream after lunch or dinner or eaten by itself, warm or cold, day or night.
It is traditionally baked in a Goan stone oven, but a regular oven or a stove top will do just fine as well!
This one is a lot like the South Indian payasam, except that it is made with moong dal and jiggery. Godshe is a typical tea time sweet and can be served hot or cold. It is loved by adults and kids alike. The secret to a perfect Godshe is a pinch of salt!
Pronounced Bolinyas, these teatime delights are commonly referred to as Goan cookies or Goan biscuits. Desiccated coconut, rava, eggs and maida come together to form a soft, tasty Bolinha that crumbles in your mouth. They say you can’t stop with one. They are quite popular around Christmas time.
Patolleo, pronounced with the ‘l’s silent like in paella, is a Goan sweet prepared for the feast of the Assumption of Mary. This is also the time when the first corn is offered for a good harvesting season. They are made with Goan red rice, coconut and jaggery, wrapped in mustard leaves and steamed. The leaves give the rice a lovely flavour and the jaggery with coconut makes the patolleo sweet and wholesome
Neureos are part of consuada, (sweets sent to neighbours and relatives) and have been heavily influenced by hindu cooking, therefore their resemblance to the ‘Gujiya’. These crescent shapes fried pastry filled with coconut, rava, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, cashew nuts and raisins are not an everyday thing. They are usually prepared during special occasions and festivals.
Of all the places to visit in Goa, make sure you find one where you can try some of the above!