Pan de Sal Pizza (Bambinos)

Nov 09

Bambinos (Pan de sal Pizza) is such a simple and unoriginal concoction. It’s not even cooking. It’s just that this afternoon I felt nostalgic about my childhood. Sometimes a food memory can be a comfort. So I remembered my mom ( she died when I was 19). We owned a bakeshop when I was growing up in Cebu (the defunct Sally’s Home Bake Shop). Not only did we serve bread, cakes or pastries, but snacks as well for the hungry customers who would drop by our “tea house”. Mom called her pan de sal pizzas , “Bambinos“. I don’t know if she coined it herself or she got the idea from a recipe book. In fact, I never referred to it as mini pizzas. In the early seventies, commercial pizzas were unheard of.

I looked around for our pan de sal and was surprised that one bread had molds in the bottom. No worries. I scraped them off. I toasted the sliced pan de sal in order to make it tougher like a pizza crust. The heat will kill off the molds too.

The basic pinoy ingredient used here is the pan de sal (literally bread from salt) and the kesong puti (white cheese). Our pan de sal was often baked in a brick oven that had layers of salt underneath. Maybe that’s how the bread got its name. As a teenager back then, I can clearly remember how the brick oven was made. Imagine a salt bed under layers of bricks. The brick oven used wood as fuel. The name of the wood escapes me now but I remember how we had stacks of it behind the bakery.

Anyway, I am digressing. These are the basic ingredients I used:

The kesong puti
kesong putikesong puti

Tomato paste with basil leaves

I made two variations: pepperoni and spanish sardines. My husband can’t eat sardines because he suffers from gouty arthritis so the pepperoni is for him.

My recipe:


10 pan de sal (cut into halves)
1 can tomato paste
a few basil leaves
A dash of worcestershire sauce
2 slices of Spanish sardines (bought in bottles)
4 slices of pepperoni cut into quarters
5 Tablespoons of quick melt cheese
5 Tablespoons of kesong puti


1. Slice pan de sal into halves. Pre-toast them so the “crust” is tougher. Set aside.

2. Prepare the sauce: mix the tomato paste with dash of worcestershire sauce, basil and a teaspoon of thyme. Set aside

3. Spread the pizza sauce on the pre-toasted pan de sal slices until covered. Top with quick melt cheese.

4. Then add the toppings: crushed sardines or the quartered slices of pepperoni.

5. Top with kesong puti.

Before toasting
before toasting

6. Toast in the oven toaster for 5 minutes.

after toasting
after toasting

So simple.

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Noemi Lardizabal-Dado (375 Posts)

Noemi, Editor of Blog Watch and features editor of Philippine Online Chronicles is a 55 year old mother to three kids and is married to Atty. Luis H. Dado. She loves being a full time mother and homemaker after retiring as a Researcher/Consultant from the UP Institute for Small Scale Industries in 1987. Now that her children are all college graduates, she devotes her time to grief support, blogging, new media events and using her blogs to promote online advocacies. Her personal blog is at, which garnered numerous awards such as Best Website, Blog Category during the 9th and 10th Philippine Web Awards. Her blog also won in the Blog- Personal Category of the Web Awards 2007 and Globelines Broadband Family Blog Award (in honor of family-oriented blogging) 2007 Philippine Blog Award. Globe also recognized her as Digital Elder in the 2009 Philippine Blog Award.

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  • Lorna Dietz

    Noems, just to juggle your memory. I named our mini-pizzas BAMBINOS. I found the original formulations in my notebook before mom died, my 1975 notebook. I got the name from one of the cookbooks that featured the original bambinos —- which featured English Muffins as the basic dough. My “trip” then was using Spanish Sardines in olive oil. I’ll share the recipe with you sometime soon. I know that Mom liked it a lot because my Bambinos were a little spicy with a tomato taste… And when we opened the Mango Avenue (Gen. Maxilom Ave.) bakeshop, Bambinos was a favorite, except this time I used the pizza crust…

  • healthygirl

    Oh these are very lovely little pizzas. IT’s perfect for apperitif I’ll give it a try.

  • Dulce

    I loved pizza. . N i give it a try. .

  • JMom

    We love doing this with English muffins as our pandesal often gets eaten up long before the chance comes to make mini pizzas :) Love the name Bambinos!

  • Meikah Delid

    I love Bambinos, too! My mom would serve them to us for snacks matched with fresh Kalamansi juice! =P~

  • Poppet Celdran

    omg! i used to pass by sally’s regularly to buy bambinos from school (shs-b) when i was in grade 5 (circa 1983). :) i loved it!