Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Salabat (Filipino Ginger Tea) Banana Bread #recipe by Mia P. Manansala @MPMtheWriter

Slices of salabat banana bread and cup of black tea

I shared one of my favorite drinks for when it’s cold and/or I’m feeling under the weather in my last post, so today I thought I’d share a very special recipe I created based on that tea, so special it’s one of the recipes in my upcoming debut novel, ARSENIC AND ADOBO: Salabat-spiced banana bread.

This is for all you ginger lovers out there, a real triple threat of a loaf. It has ground ginger in the batter and topping, as well as bits of crystallized/candied ginger sprinkled throughout. The candied ginger can be left out if you can’t find it, or you enjoy the taste of ginger but don’t like biting in chunks of it. The topping is also optional, but highly recommended--the wonderful crust it creates is my favorite part.

Derek’s Salabat-Spiced Banana Bread (Filipino Ginger Tea Inspired)

When Lila first got into baking, she devised this recipe for Derek and it remained his favorite despite the change in their relationship. She couldn’t blame him—as a fellow ginger fiend, she finds it absolutely delicious with a nice milky tea. 

Yield: One 9x5 inch loaf



2 cups flour

¼ tsp cayenne

½ tsp salt

½ tsp cinnamon (heaping)

1 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp baking soda


5 medium to large bananas (VERY ripe)

5 TBSP melted coconut oil (or melted butter)

½ to ¾ cup honey (depends on how sweet you like it)

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

A few swipes of calamansi or lemon zest (about ¼ - ½ lemon)


¼ - 1 cup chopped crystallized ginger (depending on your taste)

1-2 TBSP instant salabat mix*


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare a 9x5 loaf pan (grease/spray/line)

  2. Whisk dry ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside.

  3. Mash the bananas in a large bowl, then add the coconut oil and honey. Mix well then whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract. Grate the lemon zest directly into the bowl and add the crystallized ginger, if using. Mix thoroughly.

  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet bowl and mix lightly with a rubber spatula until just combined. Don’t overmix, it will still be slightly lumpy.

  5. Put mixture in a prepared loaf pan and sprinkle top with instant salabat mix, if using. Bake for about an hour. Check the banana bread about halfway through the cook time, and if it’s browning too fast, cover with aluminum foil.

  6. It’s done when a knife or chopstick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool and enjoy with a nice cup of tea!

*Don’t have access to instant salabat mix? Combine 2 TBSP sugar (turbinado sugar gives a wonderful crunch, but granulated is OK too), 1 tsp ground ginger, ½ tsp cinnamon, and ¼ tsp cayenne

Cast of characters
Mix the dry ingredients
In a separate bowl, mash the bananas
Add wet ingredients, lemon zest, and crystallized ginger to the bananas and mix thoroughly
Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients bowl
Mix until just combined. It's supposed to be lumpy, so don't overmix
Add batter to prepared loaf pan
Mix topping, if you don't have instant salabat mix
Sprinkle topping over batter

Bake about an hour in a 350 degree Fahrenheit oven until a knife or chopstick inserted in the middle comes out clean

If you liked this recipe, make sure you sign up for my newsletter! I include a Filipino-themed recipe every month, and April’s newsletter will have information on my pre-order campaign!

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One of BuzzFeed’s Highly Anticipated Mystery Novels of 2021!


The first book in a new culinary cozy series full of sharp humor and delectable dishes—one that might just be killer….


When Lila Macapagal moves back home to recover from a horrible breakup, her life seems to be following all the typical rom-com tropes. She’s tasked with saving her Tita Rosie’s failing restaurant, and she has to deal with a group of matchmaking aunties who shower her with love and judgment. But when a notoriously nasty food critic (who happens to be her ex-boyfriend) drops dead moments after a confrontation with Lila, her life quickly swerves from a Nora Ephron romp to an Agatha Christie case.


With the cops treating her like she’s the one and only suspect, and the shady landlord looking to finally kick the Macapagal family out and resell the storefront, Lila’s left with no choice but to conduct her own investigation. Armed with the nosy auntie network, her barista best bud, and her trusted Dachshund, Longanisa, Lila takes on this tasty, twisted case and soon finds her own neck on the chopping block…


Pre-Order from my local indies: 

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  1. Wow. Ginger has gone to heaven and returned as a sweet bread!

    1. Haha, what a great way to put it! Thanks, Libby.

  2. I love banana bread and am excited at having a gingery spice version. Thanks for sharing the recipe!