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[Recipe] Minatamis na Kamias (Candied Bilimbi fruit)

With the abundance of kamias fruits in our backyard whenever they are in season, I tried several methods on how to preserve them. My previous post explored the possibility of pickling them in sweet and salty pickling brine, this time I will be discussing another method: making minatamis na kamias.

Minatamis na Kamias (Candied Bilimbi)


A kilogram of kamias, washed and cut into a quarter of an inch thick disks
3 cups of white sugar
1 cup sea-salt
Water (enough to soak the sliced fruit)

Kamias soaking in brine solution

In a large bowl, mix the kamias with the sea salt and add just enough water to soak the kamias in brine water. Let it stand for at least an hour. Drain the kamias. In a medium-sized saucepan, heat the kamias with a cup of white sugar. 

The kamias will release a lot of liquid during heating

Keep the heat low and mix gently until the sugar is melted and it is simmering. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes. The fruit will still release a lot of liquid at this point. Drain the liquid out and add another cup of white sugar and repeat the process. By the second time you discard the excess liquid and added the 3rd cup of sugar, the fruit will take on a slightly wrinkled appearance due to the loss of the liquid. Add a pinch of salt. Continue to cook the fruit until the water further evaporates and you are left with a slightly thick and sticky consistency. Let it cool and keep in clean jars. You can enjoy these on its own or use it as a jam with bread.


Unknown said...

My grandmother used to make kamias sweets. She would squeeze the juice out, then dry it under the sun. She puts lime too, to make the candied kamias nutty. This is the part that I do not know. How much lime and how to mix it.

Can anybody help.

Andres M.

JEP said...

Hi Andres. Your grandmother's recipe sounds very sensible since it eliminates the step of discarding the liquid in my recipe. The purpose of the lime (or any citrus for that matter) is twofold. It adds to the flavor (how much is a matter of preference) and it also aids in the process called "sugar inversion" so that the sugar doesn't crystallize upon cooling which makes the candied fruit feel "grainy/gritty". You can also use cream of tartar for this purpose.