The Visayans are pretty familiar with this. Tablea de Cacao are actually tablets of chocolate made from roasted cocoa beans. I must admit that I never tasted this, not until my husband finally introduced me to this wonderful world of chocolate drinking.
And, oh, what an awesome experience my first cup of sikwate was --
A cup or two, or three, when I need a good shot of caffeine, and I'm up and running for the day. I never risk downing more than these cups 'coz my sister once felt dizzy when she drank the whole chocolatera (that pitcher thingy where the beverage is mixed using batirol an implement usually made of guava wood).
I've tried tablea de cacao as a beverage mixed with milk and also in champorado (chocolate porridge). I must say that I will never use any chocolate product again when it comes to concocting choco beverage or cooking champorado. It was an elevation of taste for me.
Luckily, we never run out of these sumptuous choco tablets because my husband's family had been in the chocolate industry for decades now. Also, the family has decided to plant cacao trees of their own in Leyte.
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I am just glad to be part of a family that's active in this cottage industry. It's small-scale, sure, but you help the small-time bean producers even, possibly, some indigent households. Cocoa bean producers come from Leyte, Davao, Iloilo, and even on the high regions of the Cordillera (specifically in Abra).
Some foreign nations have also gone gaga over these tablets. We have imported to the San Francisco Bay in the U.S., Norway, and soon, in Brazil.
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E.S. Villamor has made a career in writing for a decade now. Her online business - GIML (Gabriela Isabel & Miguel Lucas) Publishing started in 2014. She advocated for women's rights and was once enamored with imparting financial literacy through training and blogs but she is now focused on propagating all things Filipino. This site is also being groomed as a rich homeschooling resource.