Yes, Yes we all know about Pina Coladas but Coconuts are so much more ....
|Young Green Coconuts are great for Pina Coladas.|
We now see them on all of our beaches in the North, this is partly due to the Old Government having a Coconut Tree plantation on Brampton Island many moons ago. We are still fortunate to come across many coconuts on the island beaches we sail to, and quite often we can harvest these if we are not in National Parks. Brampton Island
Under the husk they are a brown nut full of nutrition. Once the husk is removed the brown shell has three eyes at one end. Inside is a further thin, brown, coat called the testa: the creamy-white, firm flesh of the coconut is attached to this. The middle of a coconut is hollow and filled with a sweet liquid known as coconut juice or coconut water. The testa of a coconut hardens as the coconut ripens. Where as young, unripe, green coconuts have white flesh still soft and jelly-like with a slightly more ‘milky’ water (this liquid is not coconut milk or coconut cream).
- Coconuts should be stored in a cool place, be it the pantry, fridge or freezer because low temperatures suppress infection by micro-organisms, to which coconuts are prone.
- Freezing changes the consistency of the coconut, actually making the meat softer and easier to process.
- For dried (shredded) coconut, it is best kept in an airtight container in the fridge once opened. A jar with a re-sealable lid works perfect to keep coconut fresh and handy.
- A young green coconut should be eaten within 2-3 days.
- A fully ripe coconut will last a couple of months.
- Pieces of fresh coconut flesh should be kept refrigerated.
- Coconut water can be stored up to 24 days in refrigerated condition at 5-7 degree centigrade. Store coconut cream/milk in the refrigerator for no more than a week. It can be frozen for up to 3 months.
- After husking. Place a whole mature coconut shell in a preheated oven at 180C 4 for 15 minutes. This will help shrink the flesh from the shell.
- To extract the water, place the coconut in a bowl to hold it upright.
- Use a drill (clean the drill piece first) to bore a hole in two of the eyes.
- Turn the coconut upside-down and drain the water into a slightly smaller bowl.
- To split the coconut into two halves, either hold the coconut in one hand and firmly strike around its circumference with the back (not the blade) of a heavy knife or cleaver. The coconut should naturally break in half.
- Alternatively, place the whole coconut into a strong plastic bag, take it ashore and hit firmly against a rock. Use your natural caveman skills.
|This is a great skill to have Ernst on Middle Percy Island shows us how|
- peel away the brown skin from the white coconut flesh
- place the flesh into a food processor with some hot water.
- Blend thoroughly, then squeeze the mixture through some muslin or a clean tea towel into a plastic, china or glass bowl (coconut reacts to metal) and set the liquid aside for 20 minutes.
- The coconut cream will float to the top of the milk and can be spooned off the surface.
- This process can be repeated to make extra coconut milk.
- One coconut yields about one cup of coconut cream.
Coconut Water .... Naturally refreshing, coconut water has a sweet, nutty taste. It contains easily digested carbohydrate in the form of sugar and electrolytes. Not to be confused with high-fat coconut milk, coconut water is a clear liquid in the fruit's center that is tapped from young, green coconuts.
- Mix chilled coconut water with a few splashes of ginger beer and a squeeze of lime for a tasty tropical drink.
|Fresh Coconut water was added to our Wild Goat|
Stew Middle Percy Island.
- Seafood loves all things coconut milk. Seriously, it's a major love affair—the kind that spans ceviches and curries, noodles and stir-fries.
- Combine it with curry paste and use it to steam mussels.
- Coconut milk on its own might make a pretty unmemorable dipping sauce, but add in some sweeteners or savoury spices and it's a whole different story. We like it simmered with red curry paste until thickened and then livened up with lime juice, soy sauce, ginger, honey, and fish sauce makes a great dipping sauce.
- Or change tacks entirely and boil it up with sweetened condensed milk, butter, and a pinch of salt for a sticky-sweet sauce perfect for drizzling on any sweets.
- Yes, yes, we all know about Pina Coladas, but coconut milk's great for so much more. But what about using it in an invigorating breakfast shake sweetened with maple syrup.
- Have a juicer or blender .... Throw in ginger, lime, mango, and pineapple mix it with coconut milk and ice for a summer drink.
- Unlike most vegetable oils, coconut oil is solid at room temperature.
- Coconut oil will melt at 22C.
- Depending on your location coconut oil may likely be liquid unless refrigerated.
- To avoid the need to hack away at your coconut oil you can simply melt it and pour it into ice cube trays. Silicon trays are great for this you can just push them out. Refrigerate the coconut oil until it’s solid. Pop the coconut oil cubes out of the tray and store them in an air tight container.
- Coconut oil has a high smoking point of 250C This makes it optimal for almost all cooking. If you’re deep frying I suggest using sustainable sourced palm oil, which has a high smoke point.
- Shred the coconut meat.
- lightly toast it and then pulse in your food processor until you have a bread crumb consistency. Use this crumb as you would Panko or bread crumbs.