Bangkiling (Phyllantus acidus) or Otaheite or Tahitian Gooseberry is used to sour soups and other dishes in some parts of the Visayas. I have heard about it for years, and was aware it was yet another souring agent for sinigang or other sour dishes. But this was the first time I had come across fresh bangkiling, in this case a kilo of it, from the same organic farm that raised the wild strawberries from Kanlaon I featured in the previous post. It is also used in Malay and other Southeast Asian countries, and Robyn of EatingAsia has a nice post where bangkiling is discussed in the comments section. Bangkiling is a tree, and the fruit look a bit like squashed green grapes, but are much firmer and quite sour. Although they carry different “family” names (bangkiling is part of the Euphorbiaceae and kamias is an Oxalidaceae) they seem related or at least similar to the kamias or iba fruit. The trees, leaf structure, texture and consistency of the fruit and sour taste all seem to point to some affinity.
It would seem like a fruit that would travel well, so I am curious why it doesn’t ever seem to make it to Manila markets. I managed to use part of this cache in a paksiw (up next) but I would love to hear how you use the fruit for future experiments… Many thanks!