Soy sauce is one of the most important food ingredients in Southeast Asia. But what if a soy-free sauce is made to substitute the traditional soybean-based condiment? Will its consumers welcome it?
There’s this episode of an agriculture-oriented TV program in the Philippines that I can’t seem to take off my mind. It’s about a soy-free sauce made from coconut water. In the video, a local farmer and the TV host demonstrated the process of producing an alternative to the common soybean-based sauce. They called the product ‘coco toyo’, which simply means coconut sauce.
I became interested in this new discovery with the small coconut farmers in the country in mind. Every 3 months, they harvest the coconut drupes for copra purposes. And as the meat is extracted from the shells, they just throw the water away. So I thought it might as well be wise to utilize this water.
Thanks to Ms. Karen M. Verona, the Executive Producer of “Agri Tayo Dito” TV program on ABS-CBN. She selflessly shared the ‘coco toyo’ recipe.
2 liters of coconut water (Be sure it is fresh and free from any foreign particles)
- Put the coconut water into a pre-heated pan.
- Stir it constantly for about 10 minutes.
- Cover the pan and let boil. Leave for 20 – 25 minutes.
- Stir the coconut water again. This time the water must have already changed color from clear to light brown.
- Wait until the water becomes caramelized (or black). Let cool, and store it in a clean bottle or another container.
I tried making this coco toyo at home but I didn’t succeed. Perhaps, I did it the wrong way. I encourage you, then, to try this yourself. It’s a healthy alternative to the condiment that we were used to. Besides, it’s a potential source of income among the small coconut farmers.