Contact Us


Senape is a rice dish wrapped in a particular leave (Daun Isip) then steamed. The leave provide sa fragrant aroma and acts as a container for the rice. Back when the kelabits practiced nomadity, mobility was key. Food should be easily carried or eaten until finished. Senape is made with “hard rice” as it is cooked twice.

senape  senape1



  1. 2 cups Rice (Bario hard rice)
  2. 3 and ½ cups of water
  3. 20 Isip leaves (daun isip)
  4. Salt (to taste)
  5. Sugar (to taste)



  1. Pour the water into a pot and bring to a boil
  2. When the water has come to a boil, stir in the rice and turn the heat down to a gentle simmer. Cover the pot
  3. When  the water has just evaporated until you are able to see the rice start to form (this will take roughly 10-15mins), stir the rice to prevent the bottom from burning. And cover the pot. Reduce the heat to low.
  4. Allow to gentle cook for another 5- 10mins until water is fully evaporated.
  5. Take a peep to check if the rice has cooked. If it has, turn off the heat immediately and allow the rice to steam for another 5 minutes with the lid on.
  6. In a steamer, bring to a boil 6 cups of water
  7. mix salt and sugar to taste into the pot of cooked rice
  8. spoon 3 tablespoons of the rice mixture into the middle of the Isip leaf.
  9. Ensure that the rice is within the centre of the leave forming a long roll.
  10. Fold the leaf and set aside
  11. Repeat step 8 to 10 until all rice and leaves are used up.
  12. Place the leaf packages into the steamer
  13. Steamer for an addition 10-17 minutes until the rice had soften


Tips and notes:

Hard rice must be used in this recipe to prevent the rice from breaking and keeping its shape after the 2 cooking process

The shinny darker green side of the leave is used as the outer wrapping. This means that the matte lighter side of the leaves is where the rice is spooned onto

Rice should be cool enough to touch but warm when wrapping to avoid hands from burning

To know if rice is done in the steamer, open a package to taste. The rice should taste cooked and soft but not be completely mush


<< Back to recipes list