I wanted to introduce the santol to those not familiar, and share this woman's recipe. She's actually a cancer survivor, and has diverted her recipes from mostly desserts to more healthy stuff.

I burn my first attempt at making dulce de santol: as in, the stuff is so black, it’s the kind of thing cookbook authors describe as “…beyond rescuing…you might as well throw it out.” And so I do.

There are times when I get so enchanted with a dish that I’m determined to replicate it in my own kitchen. It’s happened with squash and buko, and now, the dulce de santol of Chef Ed Quimson which he served at his recent guest stint at Paseo Uno. It’s the amber color that snags me in its spell really, as well as the syrupy sweetness tickling the back of my throat. It reminds me of the bottled stuff labeled “Santol Jam” that my parents used to buy from Good Shepherd in Baguio.

Dulce de Santol is sweetened – some say, preserved – santol. The fruit is boiled down in sugar and water until it caramelizes, its natural pectin contributing that gorgeous reddish-brown hue. It’s a more sophisticated, and obviously fussier (!) take on eating raw santol that I usually nosh on with a dip of salt, sugar, and chili powder. I also speculate if there really is any satisfaction derived from eating santol – sucking on the seeds certainly isn’t very exciting; more often than not, the seeds are a vehicle for my dip of salt and sugar. And the rind can be quite sour, too.

Santol is a tennis ball-like fruit, a combination of yellow and green wrinkled skin. A fruit that can only grow in tropical climes, santol can be found in the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Brunei, and India. Its rind is downy and thick, almost as much as half an inch of it protecting the opaque, somewhat juicy pulp of three to five seeds.
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Success On The Second Santol | Dessert Comes First