Thursday, July 24, 2008

Sinigang na Bangus sa Santol (Milkfish in Wild Mangosteen Sour Soup)

Do you know the English word for santol is wild mangosteen? I confess I didn't know that until I have to write this post and "google" about it. This just shows that no matter how old we are, we can still learn new things everyday and blogging about food helps us learn in a lot of ways too!

Supermarkets seem to be teeming with Santol nowadays. There must be an oversupply because even the Bangkok Santol variety (the bigger ones) are on sale. The price? 14 pesos a kilo! (around 25 cents U.S.) Being the cheapskate that I am, with the big lure of "SALE!," I really had to give in to my impulse and buy some. It is high in Vitamin C anyway... As expected, Hubby and kids turned up their noses at the sourness of santol! The problem now is, how to finish my entire supply of santol without suffering from extreme acidity of my tummy?

I seem to remember reading a post from Market Manila (a food blog that talks about food, recipes, ingredients, restaurants and markets here in the Philippines and around the globe) that talked about Santol, and another about making it into Sinigang. If you are a regular reader of Market Manila, you will know that MarketMan is trying to cook all versions of our famous Sinigang. So I am sure he will have the santol version in his archives. I checked into the archives, and he had indeed cooked the Sinigang na Bangus sa Santol ala Marketman, July 27 of last year! Please read the entire post here.

Instead of small santols that he used, I used the bigger ones. And I cooked an entire fish, not half. Other than that, I followed his instructions to the letter.

1 whole boneless milkfish, cut into 4 pcs
2 pcs large santol (Bangkok variety)
3 cups water
salt to taste

1. Prepare the wok or cooking pan by adding water.

2. Peel the santol skin using a knife. Discard the skin. Cut the meat into sections. Add the meat and seeds into the water.

3. Boil water with the santol and then simmer for around 15 minutes. During the last few minutes, mash some santol meat to extract more flavor. The soup will turn milky white at this point.

4. Add the bangus fillet. Cook for a while, around 5 minutes until fish is done. Do not overcook the fish. Season with salt. Serve immediately.

Simple and tasty. The kids love the natural sourness of the santol soup. They declared it the best Sinigang ever, even better than the Tamarind version.

This dish will definitely come back to the dining table next time around - sale or no sale of santol... Maybe next time, I can add Siling Haba (Finger Chillies or Jalapeno chillies) and KangKong (water spinach).

This dish is my first entry to Bookmarked Recipes, an event where foodies can talk about dishes and food they made from the recipes of other blogs, magazines or books. This event is a truly great idea. Even before I found this event, I have been featuring recipes from other blogs already. Thanks to Ruth of Ruth's Kitchen Experiments for this weekly feature! Please check out her blog on Monday for the 15th edition (already! wow!).

Other recipes I have bookmarked and cooked before today:

Baked Eggs from A Scientist in the Kitchen

Brocolli and Cheese Egg Bake from Kalyn's Kitchen

Chicken with Mango from Wandering Chopsticks

Cucumber Salad with Creamy Soy Ginger Dressing from White on Rice Couple

Golden Banana Cake from Market Manila

Japanese Salad Dressing from

Mango Muffins from Wandering Chopsticks

Korean Bulgogi from Cooking for a Cause cookbook by Philippine Campus Crusade for Christ


Chibog in Chief said...

its been a decade i havent eaten a good sinigang..this sounds yummy!

eatingclubvancouver_js said...

I haven't had sinigang made with santol and I've always been wanting to try one. Good-looking bowl of soup!

Soli Deo Gloria said...

You will definitely need lots of rice with this dish! I hope both of you can get to try it one day... do you have santol in your areas?

Ruth Strong said...

I'd never heard of Santol before... I've learned a lot from this post.

Thanks for recreating this recipe for bookmarked recipes!

Anonymous said...

We never had this dish without chicharon from Pampanga - you know, the really crispy, really sinful type for which the province is known, which not only has the skin of pork but the meat, too. Then my Mother puts a few kangkong leaves (chinese kangkong preferred) just before lifting the kaserola or palayok (earthen pot) from the stove. Uberrrr Yuuummmyyy !

Sinigang said...


Your Sinigang looks really delicious!

I'm collecting a list of the best sinigang recipes in my blog, and I included your sinigang recipe (just a link though, hope you don't mind). You can see it at

Keep in touch!

Tanya Regala

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I have to eat only soups and I think that is so delicious and appropiate so save mt health, I believe also that It is cheap and easy to make.

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