It’s Spring and we just feel like breaking out in song. One of our favourites – “If you like piña coladas. And getting caught in the rain”… Yes, you know the one.
Well you can’t make a piña colada or a decent Thai curry without coconuts. Its water makes a great recovery drink, and its fibrous husk, when burned, repels mosquitoes! Who knew?
These are just three of many excellent reasons to celebrate World Coconut Day on Wednesday, September 2. One of nature’s most versatile products, the coconut plant (and its various parts) can be used for food and drink, cosmetic preparations and decorating. Coconuts are also high in iron, magnesium, fibre and protein, and coconut products play prominent roles in gluten-free, soy-free and vegan diets.
Whether you’re stuck on a deserted island or comfortable in your own home, here is an easy peasy recipe – courtesy of Chef Eoin Shiell from Capsicum Culinary Studio – as well as a few more recipes that make good use of this versatile tropical wonderfruit.
Chef Eoin Shiell’s Coconut and Chia Pudding
For the Chia Pudding
– 1 tin coconut milk
– 1 tin coconut cream
– 1 tablespoon honey
– 4 teaspoons Chia seeds
– ½ tsp vanilla essence (or seeds from ½ vanilla pod)
– In a saucepan gently bring the coconut milk, coconut cream, vanilla seeds & honey to a boil.
– Remove from the heat a whisk in the chia seeds. Allow to cool down and then pour halfway into your
glass/mould/cup. Place in the fridge, covered, for at least 4 hours to set. The chia seeds will absorb
the moisture and set the coconut at the same time.
For the Dalgona Coffee
– 4 tablespoons instant coffee
– 4 tablespoons sugar
– 4 tablespoons hot water
– Place all the ingredients into a large bowl and whisk until it becomes fluffy and forms a whipped
cream like consistency. Store in a sealed container or piping bag for up to 2 days in the fridge. Ideally
whisk again before using
– Granola of your choice
– Fresh strawberries sliced
– Sprinkle the Granola to form a nice even layer on top of the chia pudding. Place the strawberries on
top of the granola. Spoon or pipe the Dalgona on last. Serve immediately.
Everyone’s Favourite Coconut Ice
– 250g sweetened condensed milk
– 250g icing sugar, sifted, plus extra for dusting
– 200g dessicated coconut
– red edible food colouring
– Using a wooden spoon, mix together the condensed milk and icing sugar in a large bowl. It will get
very stiff. Work the coconut into the mix until it’s well combined.
– Split the mix into two and knead a very small amount of food colouring into one half.
– Dust a board with icing sugar, then shape each half into a smooth rectangle and place one on top of
the other. Roll with a rolling pin, re-shaping with your hands every couple of rolls, until you have a
rectangle of two-tone coconut ice about 3cm thick.
– Transfer to a plate or board and leave uncovered for at least 3 hrs or ideally overnight to set. Cut into
squares with a sharp knife and pack into bags or boxes.
These will keep for up to a month if stored in an air