Ice cream is one of the most popular summertime cravings. It is always best served in a cone rather in a cup. Cones are designed to complement the sweet, creamy taste of ice cream. One is better fulfilled if after consuming the ice cream, one is treated to a crispy crunch of sugar cone.

Ice cream cone made from Adlay 1


As ice creams become more elaborate, one can choose to have chocolate, nuts, honeycomb or colored sprinkles as decorations, adding a little extra excitement, and giving a much better “wow” of flavor to the whole ice cream eating experience.

An ice cream cone or “apa” in Tagalog, is a dry, cone-shaped pastry, usually made of wafer similar in texture to a waffle, which enables ice cream to be held and eaten without a bowl or spoon.

Nowadays, there are many types of cones to choose from in the market. Various types of commercially available cones include cake cones, sugar cones, waffle cones, and pretzel cones. Most of them are now creating much more appeal in the market as they value the uses of each cone type with the different variations, uniqueness, and special features.

But have you ever heard of sweet cone made from Adlay?


How it all started

As one of the active implementers of research activities on adlay, the Department of Agriculture-Regional Field Office (DA-RFO) 4B (MIMAROPA) has been consistent in developing technologies and carrying out initiatives that will further improve and promote the adlay crop. One of its most notable feats is a product called Adlay Sweet Cone.

Adlay, known as a healthy, versatile food ingredient, can be ground into flour and used to make breads, pastas, porridge, and among others just like rice. It has a good eating quality, revealing that adlay grains can also provide essential nutrients needed by the body.

Ice cream cone made from Adlay 2

The DA-MIMAROPA, led by Ms. Lorena B. Mendoza, also the Adlay focal person, was on its track in showcasing techniques on how to prepare various affordable, nutritious, and palatable adlay delicacies.

“Marami na kaming nagawang products out of adlay, katulad ng adlay broas, cookies, kalamay, pandesal, turones de adlay, arrozcaldo, champorado, patiktik, sinukmani, polvoron, noodles, at shing-aling,” Mendoza said. “Nakagawa na rin kami ng adlay softy ice cream, naisip namin ang ka-partner ng ice cream ay apa, at doon nga pumasok yong adlay sweet cone,” she added.

DA-MIMAROPA developed various products because they wanted to make unique products that are not yet done by other regions. They are always looking for the other potentials of crop. “Kaya sa tuwing makakakita kami ng tindahan or pasalubong center ay lagi kaming nagtitingin ng mga products na pwede magawa out of adlay at iyon ang bigla naming naisip,” she revealed.

It was during the 12th Agriculture and Fisheries Technology Forum and Product Exhibition (NTF) held at SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City that the Adlay Sweet Cone was first exhibited. “At that time, eight packs of Adlay Sweet Cone lang ang aming nagawa at nang nakita ito ng Mama Sita’s, binili nila lahat ang display namin, at simula noon ay nag-oorder na sila sa tuwing may event,” Mendoza said.

When it comes to taste, Mendoza shared that the Adlay Sweet Cone is thicker, crispy, and has a little bit lumpy texture as one chews itproviding an interesting twist to the customers’ delight. Even if eaten alone, Adlay Sweet Coneis more delicious compared to other commercially available cones in the market. “Marami nang nakapag-try ng aming adlay sweet cone at laging may product display kami sa tuwing may invitation. At humanga talaga sila na yong adlay flour pala ay nagagawang adlay sweet cone at mas masarap daw sa karaniwang cone,” she added. The product shelf-life of the product can reach up to four months with proper keeping at the storage.

Today, Mendoza said that the product has made many orders from Mama Sita’s and the DA-RFO 5 has also been ordering their products to complement in the Bicol region’s bread fruit or rimas ice cream.

“Sa ngayon plano naming magkaroon ng information caravan, una sa area namin to promote the product. We also prospect na magkaroon kami ng ugnayan sa DA-AMAD,” she added.

The DA-MIMAROPA envisioned a partnership with the DA-Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Division (AMAD) to give them important information on market development services, assist them in identifying potential market linkages, private adopters, and market matching activities so that they are able to develop an agricultural product market for the Adlay Sweet Cone.

Comparing it to the commercially-available cones

Commercial cones are mostly blended with lots of sugars, wheat flour, and tapioca flour (a starch from cassava plant). Other than having one percent of the amount of iron recommended daily, there is no nutritional benefit in having an ice cream cone. Based on its percent daily values and nutrition facts by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), 100 grams of servings of any type of commercial cones has a total of 417 calories percent daily values.

A typical cone will net around 10 grams of sugar which is almost 50 percent of the recommended daily intake. Consuming high amounts of sugar can lead to weight gain, diabetes, and increased production of ghrelin – a hunger hormone that tells the body that we are still hungry so you may want to have a second serving.

Ice cream cone made from Adlay 3

Aside from sugar, tapioca can cause certain concerns as well. Tapioca naturally produces cyanide. While the manufacturing process most likely gets rid of the cyanide, there is still a risk, no matter how small, that eating tapioca or anything with tapioca in it could introduce cyanide into the body. Products that have tapioca can enjoy every once in a while without worry, but real problems can quickly arise when you are consuming multiple per day.

Unlike typical commercial cones, the Adlay Sweet Cone is made from brown sugar, water, and wheat flour, and instead of using tapioca flour, adlay grain flour is being used.

Adlay grain is highly nutritious. According to a chemical analysis also provided by the FNRI, a 100-gram serving of adlay is superior in terms of its food energy content (365kcal), rich in carbohydrate content (73.9 g), protein (12.8 g), and fat (1.0 g). It is also packed with other minerals including calcium (25 mg), phosphorus (43.5 mg), iron (5 mg), niacin (4.3 mg), (0.28 mg), and riboflavin (0.19 mg), and has a high fiber that  shows promising results in anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and blood sugar-lowering properties for optimum health of the human body.

That is why consuming a piece of Adlay Sweet Cone is considered a sweet treat much better than eating the usual, commercially-available ice cream cone.

A year after DA-MIMAROPA first introduced Adlay Sweet Cone into the public; they showcased it again during the 13th NTF hailing it as one of the winners of the best innovative products. ###


For more information:

Ms. Lorena B. Mendoza
Adlay Focal Person
DA- Regional Field Office 4B (MIMAROPA)
Bacenaga, Naujan Oriental Mindoro
Phone: 0917-539-9975


by Leoveliza C. Fontanil,