Saturday, May 9, 2015


 Before you start picking for antiques, why not try looking around your own house first? This is just what I did when I started getting hooked on old things. Ever since I can remember, we've always had this stone grinder at home, which was actually used for years in the making of bibingka, tamales and other sweet kakanins (homemade delicacies).
One used a spoon to "feed" the stone grinder with gelatinous rice and water, through a small opening on the top stone wheel. The brass handle is then turned by hand, and the ground rice then comes out of the spout, with a sticky consistency now called "galapung"--the main ingredient in many Filipino sweet treats. This domestic antique bears the name of the original owner, who happens to be the elder brother of my grandpa--Dr. Melecio R. Castro,
The date is carved out on the top stonewheel--Enero 15, 1913--which makes this gilingan a certified antique--over 100 years old! I am glad I saved our stne grinder, which went out of commission many years ago, with the advent of instant "galapung" flour. It still is in great condition, with its original brass turner, that is connected to the stone with a tongue or hardwood, It rests now in my garage, treated like a sculptural piece, the way gilingans are being collected these days as garden ornaments. Hopefully, I will find the opportunity to use this again, to make my favorite tamales. Giling-giling, pag may time!

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