The gracious couple Marjorie and Terry Ortega manage one of the biggest binagol kitchens in Dagami Leyte. It started in the early 2000s which they succeeded from Marjorie’s father. They own a spacious kitchen all organized with complete cooking facilities. They also make sagmani and moron to meet the demands of their consumers.
The Round-shaped sweets called binagol is what they really brag. It is made from talyan which are grown in and transported from Palapag, Northern Samar. The grated talyan, coconut milk and sugar are all mixed together for the pudding. Then special syrup is poured into coconut shells then topped with the pudding mix. The filled shells are then wrapped in pakol banana leaves. The leaves are secured around the shells with straw tied expertly. The packed, filled shells are then arranged in a large cauldron filled with water. Two dozen binagol can fit the cauldron at a time. It will be cooked for as good as eight hours.
The business produces tens of dozens of binagol daily. They sold it primarily in Tacloban and stall outside their house for the Bus travellers who get their pasalubong fresh right from Dagami. The story of Marjorie and Terry’s success was featured in Joel Concepcion’s 100 inspiring stories of Small Entrepreneurs. (Marisse P. Cadayong)