6 Amazing Things You Can Do With Coconut
6 amazing things you can get from a coconut
The other day while on my way from work, I saw women on the street hawking my favourite nut, Coconut. Coconut is my superfood because it contains vitamins, dietary fibre, protein and it is so versatile. Let me tell you six things you can get from my super fruit and its benefits.
1. Coconut water
Coconut water is very hydrating and delicious. During WWII hospitals actually used coconut water for emergency blood transfusions because coconut water has the same makeup as human plasma. It is known to naturally remove toxins from the body, boost electrolytes, aid in digestion, elevate mood, deeply hydrate, boost metabolism, fight viral infections, fight bacterial infections, treat acne, neutralise acidity, and so, so, so much more.
The first thing you do is locate the 3 ‘eyes’ on one end of the coconut. They are easy to pierce with a screwdriver. Try not to imagine a cute little face while you’re doing this, trust me. I used a small hammer to tap the end of my screwdriver in. Do this for 2 of the holes, and then drain the coconut over a small bowl. Strain the liquid through a fine sieve or cheesecloth. Now you got a glass of delicious coconut water.
2. Coconut frosting
Grab your coconut after draining the water, and crack it. Get the coconut ‘meat’ out of the shell. This is really tough, but truly there is no easy way, so just grab a blunt knife and start gouging your way through it. If you have the patience you can try to insert your knife in between the white meat and the hull at the edge and wiggle the knife to try to pry larger pieces free. Just get out what you can, It gets easier with practice.
Use a vegetable peeler or small knife to remove any bits of brown skin that cling to the meat. Then put the pieces in a small food processor and pulse away until it’s finely ground. Now you have coconut to use for cakes, frosting and whatever you like. Keep it in an airtight container in the fridge while you are deciding what to do with it.
3. Coconut extract
Coconut is a difficult flavour to distill, the longer you let the mixture sit, the better. add several tablespoons of the fresh coconut meat to half a cup of vodka in a small glass container with a tight-fitting lid. Set it aside in a cool dark place for 7 to 10 days. Give it a shake every day. Then strain it through a coffee filter to remove the solids. Pour through a funnel into a small bottle (a recycled vanilla bottle works well) and you will have a lovely natural extract. Note: You will not smell the coconut in this extract like you would with, say, with vanilla, but it will import the taste in baked foods.
4. Coconut milk
Coconut milk is a good source of saturated fat which helps with cardiovascular health, weight loss, absorption of calcium, liver health, nerve signalling etc. Coconut milk is also a good source of minerals like iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium. To prepare coconut milk you’ll need:
– 4 cups of water
– 2 cups of shredded coconut
Directions: Heat the water in a pot but do not let it boil. Place the shredded coconut in the blender and add the hot water. Let it steep for about 20-30 minutes and then blend until it is thick and creamy (about 2-3 minutes). Strain through a mesh strainer and then strain again through a towel. Refrigerate – it can last 2 -3 days if properly preserved.
5. Coconut flour
Coconut flour is gluten and grain free. Use only a small quantity because it soaks up more liquid than regular flour.
Directions: Spread the pulp that was left over from making the milk out on a baking sheet or clean tray. Use a fork to break up the pulp. Now you can either leave it out for 24 hours to air dry or put it in an oven at the lowest setting for 4 hours. Once it’s dried, throw it back in the blender to make your flour. Store in an airtight container.
6. Coconut oil
Coconut oil has so many uses. It can be used as a body oil, hair conditioner, for cooking and in baking as a substitute for butter. You will need:
– Shredded coconut
Directions: Add some water to the grated coconut and mix well. Squeeze out the milk from the mix. You can do it with your hands, or use a piece of cloth to filter out the milk from the mix. Do it twice to extract more milk from the leftover. Do not overdo otherwise you will end up with a lot of water in the extract. Pour the milk into a pot and heat. The coconut milk may boil up so use a wooden stick to stir the milk. Carry on till all the water gets evaporated from the mix. This may take considerable time as all the water needs to be evaporated. Now you can see oil bubbling on the surface of the heated milk. Remove from fire and allow the oily milk to cool down. Use a cloth to strain your oil from the milk and you are done. Store in an airtight container.
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