A Beloved Cream-Filled Cookie From The Philippines Is Coming to Jefferson Park

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Mharloe and Katrina Requiron are taking a leap of faith in opening their Jefferson Park bakery. They created Crumbs.nd.Creams in 2020 when the pandemic created an increased interest in baked goods. But this isn’t a tale of sourdough starters. Crumbs,nd.Creams was born out of the nostalgia Filipino immigrants have for sylvana, a cream-stuffed cookie.

These cookies, which are sometimes spelled as “silvana,” have a French origin with a texture similar to a macaron and a crisp exterior. They’re often served cold and stuffed with buttercream. They’re widely available in the Philippines, but not so much in the U.S. The Requirons’ operation has been a success and they were featured on Good Morning America back in September 2022.

As the pandemic operation grew, it became time to open a public-facing component, a place where customers could regularly get their fix of sylvanas and other Filipino baked goods. That will happen in by late April when Crumbs.nd.Creams debuts in a Jefferson Park space that they’ll share with another restaurant, Taste of Philippines. Each operation will take a side, splitting sweet and savory.

A stack of sandwich cookies.
Sylvanas are French inspired sandwich cookies.

Crumbs.nd.Creams puts its own spin on their cookies with 10 different flavors. Flavors like ube, matcha, butter pecan, mocha, and flan. Katrina Requiron writes they’re excited to unleash more varieties during the summer and experiment with flavors. Coconut is a flavor that’s popular in Filipino baked goods and one that they’re excited to showcase.

“It can be combined with other flavors, but it can also stand on its own, such as our coconut ham sylvana,” Katrina Requiron writes. “These cookies were inspired by a Filipino spread of the same name made of coconut cream and brown sugar, which gives it a ‘coco-caramelly’ taste to it.”

Both Mharloe and Katrina Requiron were born in the Philippines. The couple lives in Algonquin and they’re excited to open a restaurant in the city where there’s a larger Filipino population. Though their families knew each other, the two didn’t meet until 2015 in America.

“She is the heart of the Crumbs.nd.Creams,” says Mharloe Requiron of her wife. “She has recipes, I’m mainly a backup dancer.”

It was Taste of Philippines owner Kathy Vega Hardy who pushed for the Requirons to share the space. It’s an unusual set up, but Katrina Requiron writes they’ve had good conversations on how they can support each other. They’re excited to be part of a booming Filipino food scene in Chicago.

“It’s been long awaited,” Katrina Requiron writes. “Filipino cuisine is blessed with local and foreign flavors, which generated a very diverse and creative palate. It can be elevated in ways that the only limit is one’s imagination. From fusion to authentic, each restaurant highlights a different essence of our culture while providing great service through food.”

Crumbs.nd.Creams, 5914 W. Lawrence Avenue, opening by late April.

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