Recipe: Make the best Bebinca this Christmas

Love Goa’s multi-layered traditional sweet dish, the Bebinca? Know its history and how it is made
The sweet dish 'Bebinca'.
The sweet dish 'Bebinca'.Picture Courtesy: Venita Gomes

If you come to Goa and are looking at trying out some traditional local sweets during Christmas, then try one of Goa’s most popular multi-layered sweet dish called ‘Bebinca’. Locals would call it ‘bebik’, the ‘Queen of desserts’.

May it be a birthday party, wedding or Christmas in Goa, you will mostly find this sweet dish on the table.

Though this brownish yellow colour custard-like sweet dish is quiet popular in Goa, the task to prepare it to perfection is tedious. You have to meticulously prepare the batter and wait patiently till it bakes on low fire. After this you have to keep it aside for least for several hours and allow it to set.

Once this is done, it is all yours!

Goa’s multi-layered traditional sweet dish, Bebinca.
Goa’s multi-layered traditional sweet dish, Bebinca. Picture Courtesy: @foodie_on.a_roll


The legend has it that Bebinca was invented by a nun called 'Bebiana' who was from the Santa Monica Convent.

She used the leftover yolks to prepare a sweet dish. She prepared it in such a way so as to symbolise the seven hills of the old city of Goa and Lisbon. After she died the dish was named 'Bebinca' after her. Today, you will find Bebinca in seven or even more layers.

The sweet dish 'Bebinca'.
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·         200 grams maida

·         10 egg yolks

·         ½ kg sugar

·         1 coconut thick milk

·         200 grams ghee

·         ¼ nutmeg powder

The sweet dish 'Bebinca'.
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· Take a container, add coconut milk and mix it with maida, sugar and egg yolks.

· Stir it thoroughly till sugar dissolves.

· Add nutmeg powder to the mixture and keep it aside.

· In a flat-bottomed cooking pot like ‘dekchi’ heat a little ghee.

· Now add one cup of the previously prepared batter. Bake this till it turns brown.

The sweet dish 'Bebinca'.
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· Add another spoonful of ghee, then another cup of batter. Continue this process till all the batter is used up in the layers.

· Make sure you bake it over slow fire with coals on the top of the dekchi lid.

· Later, turn the Bebinca upside down.

· Cool before serving

The sweet dish 'Bebinca'.
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So, make your Christmas celebration in Goa special by preparing this sweet dish that has been passed down from one generation to the other and is part of Goa's culture.

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