Coconut

How is a coconut classified?  Is it healthy?

Fresh coconut meat is a world away from bagged shredded stuff.  Shredded coconut has been dehydrated, where as fresh coconut meat is bursting with it’s own flavor and texture walking the line of savory and sweet.

Coconut is the fruit of the coconut tree.  The brown shell is actually the seed of the fruit after it’s been husked.

Coconut meat is rich in iron and potassium. It’s also high in saturated fat, but natural coconut oil supposedly enhances your immune system, improves digestion, helps the body absorb minerals, and improves your overall cholesterol ratio.

How do you crack a coconut?

METHOD ONE:  you bought your coconut and you have a well stocked kitchen/tool shed:

  1. A coconut from the store will already be husked.
  2. Bake your coconut for 20 minutes at 350°F. Let the coconut cool. (This just makes it easier to crack the shell)
  3. Take a mallet and a machete (or screwdriver or metal screwer), pierce a hole in 2 of the 3 eyes at the stem end of the shell. Invert the coconut to drain the juice into a glass. With a mallet (or hammer), tap the machete until the nut breaks in half.
  4. Set each half, flesh side down, on your work surface. Tap the back of each piece with the mallet to break it into smaller pieces.
  5. Break the coconut into chunks with your hands. Then, with a table knife, dislodge the meat from the shell.
  6. The brown skin of the coconut is edible, but it can be peeled off with a vegetable peeler or knife.

METHOD TWO:  you picked your coconut up off the ground andyou have basic tools:

  1. Husk your coconut with a knife.  Start husking at the stem end of the coconut so that you can access the “eyes” first.
  2. A coconut has three “eyes” poke these with a machete (or screw driver) to find the softest one.  Work your tool into the coconut until you have a 1/2″ hole. Drain the coconut water into a glass.
  3. On a clean work surface, tap the coconut with a mallet, turning every time you tap in order to break it.
  4. Once you have two (or more) pieces, place meat side down, and tap with a hammer until the coconut is in manageable pieces.
  5. Pry the meat off the shell a table knife.
  6. Peel the skin off the meat with a vegetable peeler or knife if desired.

Coconuts and Belize:

This publication, Belize Ag Report, speaks to the complex agriculture/coconut business in Belize.  Worldwide demand for coconuts continues to rise, but diseases that effect coconut trees and hurricanes impact the growth of coconuts.

 

 

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