PANTOSTA or PAN TOSTA
Pantosta, pronounced pan-toss-ta, is toasted bread. Traditional pantosta on Guam look like a misshapen bagel or a twist doughnut. However, I found it very messy to break the round pantosta in half so it could fit in my cup. Hence, I followed my mother-in-law's trick of shaping pantosta into logs.
The key to a good pantosta is drying it properly. If it is not toasted all the way through, it gets stale quickly. The pantosta recipe in Remember Guam yields a very crunchy and hard treat. Make sure your coffee is very hot.
I am pretty sure you can use your favorite yeasted-sweet bread recipe to make pantosta, just follow the baking and drying process indicated in my recipe and my video.
Soon I will make my Chamorro sweet bread recipe and roll some into logs to make pantosta. I'll let you know how it turns out. The Chamorro sweet bread is delish, so I am sure I will have yummy pantosta for this cold season.
Here is the recipe, directly out of my book, Remember Guam:
Pantosta, or toasted bread, for the Chamorros, is bread meant to be dipped in coffee! Growing up, we bought pantosta instead of making it ourselves. Or, my Grandma Cruz would toast sandwich bread, and that worked as a substitute.
Here is a delectable recipe from Mom Q. Making pantosta is a time consuming endeavor. The following recipe yields a very large batch of dough. It takes a long time to roll each piece, bake the entire batch, and an even longer time to dry / do the final baking.
One thing you may try is to use your favorite bread recipe. Perhaps you can try a ready-made, refrigerated dough….following the baking / browning / hardening procedures below.
The resulting pantosta, using this recipe, takes a little longer to soak up the coffee…but it is sooo delicious. Also, this is extra yummy when you dip this pantosta in Country Crock Spread……OMG!
Hm, butter and pantosta…reminds me of the sweet Navy biscuits with a lot of butter on top…YUM!
1 large vanilla pudding box (the cooking kind)
1¾ c. milk + 3 c. (required for the pudding recipe on box)
3 – ¼ oz. pkgs. Active Dry yeast
1 c. warm water at 110 degrees
1 T. sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
1 ½ c. sugar
Dash of salt
12 ½ c. all-purpose flour
Tools: 3 medium bowls, 2 very large bowls, several cookie sheets, non-stick baking parchment, non-stick pan spray
- In a medium bowl, make the box of vanilla pudding according to directions on the box, adding the extra 1¾ cup of milk. Set in the fridge overnight.
- From set 2, pour the warm water into a medium bowl. Sprinkle the 3 packages of yeast over the water. Stir to dissolve. Set aside in the oven (DO NOT turn oven on).
- In a separate medium bowl, combine the eggs, sugar and salt from set 3.
- Remove the pudding from the fridge and add to the egg mixture.
- Pour this egg / pudding combo into the dissolved yeast.
- Stir to combine. Transfer this mixture to the very large bowl.
- Slowly add the flour to the wet mix till incorporated. Initially, add only the 12 cups of the flour, four cups at a time, to form a slightly sticky dough. If the dough feels really wet, go ahead and add the last half cup of flour. DO NOT add more!
- Spray the second very large bowl with pan spray.
- Place the dough into this bowl. Set the bowl in the oven for 60 minutes (DO NOT turn oven on).
- Punch the dough down and let rise again for another hour.
- Spray several cookie sheets with pan spray.
- Use a ¼ cup measuring cup (preferably with a thin rim) to scoop dough portions out. Divide each ¼ cup portion in half. Or, you may simply pull pieces of dough out estimating the size.
- Roll each piece into very thin, long, ropes about 1 cm thick and 6 inches long.
- Place on cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Let rise on counter-top as you roll out more dough.
- Heat oven to 300 degrees.
- Bake a sheet of dough till each piece of “bread” is BARELY browned, about 17 to 20 minutes.
- Remove “bread” from cookie sheet and cool completely on a wire rack.
- Repeat #16 and #17 till all pieces of dough have been partially baked.
- Reduce the oven heat to 200 degrees. Allow a few minutes for the temperature to drop.
- Carefully fit as many pieces of “bread” directly on both oven racks. REMEMBER, THE OVEN IS HOT! You can let the pieces touch each other.
- The “bread” will have to dry / bake for about 5 to 6 hours. During this time, it will darken, cook, harden and shrink. Check pantosta every 1.5 hours. How dark is it? How hard is it?
- Once “bread” has taken on a much darker color, press a few pieces between your fingers. If it is not very hard, continue to cook in oven.
- Pantosta is done when it is COMPLETELY hardened.
- This drying process may take 4-6 or more hours depending on how thick your dough is, how hot your oven is, and humidity.
- Cool on a wire rack and store in Ziploc bags.
- Makes about 110 pieces if you use the ¼ cup method above.
**Author’s Note: You may also bake some of dough for soft, sweet bread. Once you have pre-baked the number of pantosta you want, turn the oven up to 350 degrees. Bake the bread till nicely browned, about 14 minutes (I simply shaped all of my dough into pantosta logs, but baked the last 3 sheets of dough for soft bread.) While the soft bread is baking, the pre-baked dough is cooling off. This recipe yields a most delicious soft, sweet bread, especially the next day, warm out of the microwave! Remember to decrease the oven temperature down to 200 degrees when you are ready to dry the pantosta.**
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