Monday, February 28, 2011

Fa'apapa - Baked pumpkin bread

By panipopos


Traditionally, fa'apapa are wrapped in leaves and thrown in the umu along with everything else. In the modern kitchen, some people use well-greased aluminium foil, which allows the fa'apapa to steam/bake just like it would in an umu. However, I prefer to use baking paper because it results in a firmer, evenly browned crust, and I don't have to peel off bits of foil where it sticks to the fa'apapa.



When you're making fa'apapa, it's best to have your coconut milk at liquid temperature. If it's solidified, it makes it harder to mix in with the flour and you might end up with tough fa'apapa. Simply put your coconut milk in the microwave for a few seconds to melt it into its liquid state, but be careful not to heat it. As always, you're going to get a much richer flavour from fresh coconut milk versus the canned stuff.

Oh and just for the record, fa'apapa does not mean bread. To fa'apapa something is to flatten it. In cooking, it means to wrap something into flat parcels and bake in an umu (Samoan oven). Although I have absolutely no proof of it, my theory is that the verb fa'apapa was originally applied to this bread because of its form and cooking method, and over time fa'apapa became the general term for this kind of baked good.


Fa'apapa can be made with coconut, pumpkin, taro, and banana, but there might be other kinds out there that I haven't tasted. The following variation is one of my favorites.



17 comments:

  1. Yum, can't wait to try this & the coconut fa'apapa, thanks!

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  2. Malo lava =) this will be the recipe for the day see if my hoa(husband) likes it!


    Malo aupito e!

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  3. You're welcome...Hope you and your husband enjoy this!

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  4. I love your site, keep 'em coming!
    I'm not Samoan but my in-laws are and I grew up on Samoan food. Could you post a tutorial for palusami? (not sure I spelled it right, the coconut wrapped in leaves, eaten on taro)

    Thanks!!!

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  5. I can't make palusami because I can't get young taro leaves here...Thx for dropping by and happy cooking!

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  6. i love when my mom makes the coconut faapapa.. but ive never had the pumpkin. it looks yummy. will have to convince my mom to try making it..hehe

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  7. Some people make fa'apapa from the pumpkin, others just bake the pumpkin up then make that directly into fa'ausi. Hope your mother tries it!

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  8. Hi again, I wish I knew your real name, I've been posting on your recipes through youtube. I wanted to ask if there was anyway you could substitute real pumpkin for the canned ones? I don't know how to cook pumpkin:( I recently visited home(Olosega, Manu'a & Aua, Pago Pago) and had the pleasure of watching my dad make fausi in a very old pot(they tell me it was originally owned by my ancestors back in 1800). Anyway, they actually had made it with taro, had cut them up in cubes and pour the fausi sauce on and Lord, I was in heaven. It is definitely one of my most favorite of dishes related to Samoan cuisine. Thank you for sharing your knowledge of cooking and especially our Samoan culture....May you be blessed for continuing to share with us youngsters on how a real Samoan woman cooks. My mom would probably get mad at me for saying that, but I haven't seen her make fausi on the stovetop....hehehehhe

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  9. Hi M. Thx for checking out my videos on Youtube...Canned pumpkin and real pumpkin are interchangeable...But if you can get real pumpkin or squash, it's simple to prepare...just peel it, scoop out the seeds and cut it up, then cover with water and boil like potatoes...When you can pierce the pumpkin pieces easily with a fork, drain them well, cool, then mash or puree...Voila! cooked pumpkin!...Wow, wish I had been there to watch your Dad make fa'ausi in the family antique pot...Scenes like that are classic...All the best with your cooking!

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  10. Ive made this 3 times already and its wonderful. so easy and tasty. Thank you.

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  11. Awesome! Thank you for the feedback :)

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  12. Hi there, is there any chance of getting a recipe for this pumpkin bread please?
    I have never tried it before but it looked so good covered in that caramel sauce!!

    Btw, I love your blog!

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  13. Hello Panipopo, Do you have a fa'ausi esi receipe? I would like to prepare and cook it but don't know how to make it. I would appreciate your help very much.

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    1. Hi, I haven't yet made a recipe for fa'ausi esi. All the best!

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  14. Hello Panipopo, Do you have a fa'ausi esi receipe? I would like to prepare and cook it but don't know how to make it. I would appreciate your help very much.

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  15. Where is the recipe for the pumpkin fa'apapa?

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