RAWKIN’ RECIPE: Homemade Santol Soda

finished santol soda

Learning to work with the seasons, I mostly make the most of what we can find in the markets in the kitchen.  These days, heaps of santol are everywhere. Working with the seasons has wonderful benefits: produce in season tastes great and nutritionally superior, plus it’s inexpensive.

Santol  (Sandoricum koetjape) has no exact translation in English although the French dubbed it as “faux mangosteen” and in some resources, it is referred to as “wild mangosteen“. Santol is anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer.

Taking a quick trip down memory lane, I grew up with a couple of trees of santol in my yard whose ripe fruits were generously offered for immediate consumption dipped in rock salt; cooked in coconut cream and chili and chopped finely to make the best santol-ade ever over ice. My grandmother would also use unripe santol as a souring agent in sinigang na isda (sour soup with fish).

I have been making guinataang santol  and served it with sprouted and cooked rice for the last two weeks at the insistence of the husband–who has roots in Bicol and thoroughly enjoyed his grandmother’s cooking. I rolled up my sleeves and cooked  a vegan version of a dish from his childhood. I ended up making juice from the leftover seeds but decided to bring it up a notch and made soda out of it using kefir.

bright and bubbly!


  • Santol seeds (used approximately the seeds of 8 santol fruits)
  • Water to cover
  • Coconut sugar to taste (I didn’t use this because it was sweet enough Jar with a tight lid (fermentation jar works well)
  • Kefir water (about 2 tablespoons or more)

Put the seeds in a jar, put water to cover and add the water kefir. Let sit overnight on your counter to ferment. Drain and squeeze the seeds, transfer to another jar and put the lid on. Keep in the fridge. Serve cold.

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