Cooking Home & Gardening

Rattan fruits in my sinigang, What are the benefits for a cancer patient?

About me

Hello everyone! I’m Dang.

 Thank you for dropping by.  Welcome to my humble zone.

I’m a breast cancer patient fighting for my rights to live. I created to show that BIG C is not the end of the world. But a beginning of a fight and a new life. I encourage those who are at the same shoes to fight even if you feel exhausted, even your wallet was drained. That, there are reason to fight back and a reason not to give up. Cheers!

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Rattan fruit comes from a rattan that belongs to the palm family native to the tropical regions of Asia, Africa, and Australia. It has known for 600 species and 13 genera. It grows in hilly tropical regions such as South and Southeast Asia.

 Rattan is a vine-like species that can be used in making furniture. Once the skin is peeled away, the inner core can be weaved into various shapes because of its natural flexibility yet sturdy characteristics.

But I’m not going to tackle the rattan industry here. I will show you the benefits of rattan fruits that most of all people ignore.

You may want to know about side effects of chemotherapy

Rattan Fruit a unique fruit inside and out!

rattan fruit
rattan fruit

An inch from top to bottom or 1 ½” diameter size, rattan fruit is covered with brown soft woody texture, layered pangolin like skin. To open this fruit, simply peel away the skin. The fruit has three sections with deep brown color. If you are not familiar with this fruit, and maybe your first time to taste it, hold yourself because it has indescribable sharp sourly taste.

The first time I tasted it, luckily there is no camera. Because maybe, I couldn’t imagine how my face looks like.

Eating these fruits will make your mouth produce more saliva than eating tamarind or bilimbi ( kamias) lemon or kalamansi. It has a strong sour taste that infiltrates your mouth, tongue, and lips.

When I found out that I have cancer, I stopped using flavor enhancers and unnatural food spices. So whenever tamarind or bilimbi is out of season, I can’t cook sinigang which is our family’s favorite. Until I found this rattan fruit here in our local market that can be a substitute to tamarind. Some locals never tried complementing it for cooking because they enjoy eating it with salt.

How I cook my sinigang ( pork stew) with rattan fruit?

First, you need to wash the pork. I chose ribs for the balanced flavor of bone marrow, fats, and meat. I bring them to boil for 3 mins. and discard the soup. I washed again the pork and add some water to start cooking. 

This process is necessary to take away the scum. You can skip this method but scrape the scum that comes up.

I add tomatoes, garlic, onion, and salt and let it simmer for about 1-2 hours. I want the meat to be tender and release the flavor of bone marrow. (I love slow cooking method).

These are the ingredients

(Bone marrow is a must in making soup that can help you to increase your WBC which was destroyed by chemotherapy.)

On the other pan, cook the rattan fruits with water, bring to boil, and let it cool down.

peeled rattan fruit

Once it cooled, get a spoon to mash the rattan fruits. Separate the seeds from the mashed fruit and discard. You can add the rattan fruit directly to the soup with the seeds but I find it more delicious and flavorful if it is mashed separately.

mashed rattan fruits
seperate the seeds from the fruit and discard the seeds.

After 1-2 hours of slow cooking, check if the meat is tender. You need to adjust the cooking time if the meat is not yet ready. Add your vegetables and simmer for 2 minutes. Then lastly, add your mashed rattan fruit. Season with salt according to your taste.

Then you have it!

 Flavorful Sinigang or Pork Stew in Rattan Fruit! The nutty sourly taste of rattan and the balanced extract of meat, bone marrow, fats, and vegetables complete my pork stew!

Rattan fruit is a great alternative in offseason tamarind fruit and bilimbi. 

What are the benefits of consuming rattan fruit?

Rattan fruit can be our Fight Cancer Allies

Rattan fruit was proven to have antioxidant properties that help to repair damaged tissue that can cause cancer. It was proven by some research that the antioxidants compound flavonoids, tannins, and triterpenoids are mostly found in all parts of edible rattan fruits.

Rattan fruit can help you lose weight

It has phytochemicals and high in fiber that can help you in your diet program. 

High fiber food can help your stomach to postpone the feeling of eating and defer your hunger. Fiber from rattan fruit can binds with fats and sugar molecules to reduce the number of calories you get from eating.

Rattan Fruit can help alleviate Anemia

Rattan fruit is rich in thiamin ( Vit.B1) which is essential for expecting women for the transformation of red blood cells. A pregnant woman needs more red blood cells that will carry the oxygen to the placenta. Lack of oxygen may threaten the health of the baby and may lead to a serious disease like beriberi.

Rattan fruits help fight bacteria

The daily consumption of these fruits helps eliminate the bacteria that grow in human body. Native people used it to stop certain diseases in their region specifically to cure diarrhea.

Can be used in cosmetic/ beauty product

Rattan fruit contains a high dose of Vitamin C that helps prevent the early aging of the skin for women. It can eliminate free radicals that can cause wrinkles, blemishes, and dark spots. That is why rattan fruit was a great help in the production of beauty products.

Keynote:  Rattan fruit exudes a red resin that was used in traditional medicine. This resin is called dragons blood and sometimes used as a dye for violins.

What’s my take?

I love pork sinigang. This flavorful soup can help alleviate the side effects of chemotherapy. Using the bony part of pork to extract the nutrients of the bone marrow helps increase your white blood cells. And adding natural vitamin C from rattan fruits enhanced the flavor with a kick to fight cancer.

Though red meat consumption (pork, beef) is said to be prohibited for a cancer patient, we have to accept the fact that sometimes we miss the flavorful dish made from this red meat. Praise those people who can live without this meat but in my case, I cannot! I ate these meats once in a while but in a small chunk. Discipline indeed cannot suppress my happiness. 

So, where is the guilt of eating red meat? None. Because I ate in moderation and just enjoyed the soup!

Till next time.