Coconuts are the hot new stud on the health scene. Thanks to celebrity endorsements and plenty of media coverage, the humble coco is turning out to be a star on the world stage. Yes, the meat is high in saturated fat, but the good news is that the majority of fat in coconut is medium chain fatty acid (not long chain fatty acid) and is broken down much faster than the long chain stuff. It also means that it doesn’t contribute to high cholesterol. In fact, a recent study published in the Philippine Journal of Cardiology suggested coconut may lower bad cholesterol levels and increase good cholesterol levels. Brilliant!
So let’s crack open the options, because once you’ve opened your little nut of goodness, it’s easy to look at it and think ‘OK, now what?’
Firstly, drink the water. It’s a potassium powerhouse and just tastes damn delicious. So, slurp it back.
Then, it’s time to deal with the meat. If you’re not ready to eat it then and there, simply close the lid and store your coconut in the fridge. It can last a few days. Once you’re ready, grab a spoon, flip it so it’s upside down (concave up) and start separating the meat from the nut. If you’re having trouble getting into the nut, grab a big knife and nerves of steel and carefully chop the nut in half.
Handy hint: I use a big, sharp knife and a small, wooden chopping board for this. Simply position the nut on a tea towel or non-slip surface and put the knife in position. Then, use the wooden chopping board to bang the knife into the nut and reduce the risk of losing a finger. MUCH BETTER!
Once open and all the meat is removed, here are my top 3 ways to add it to my diet…
1. WHIZ IT
Breakfast smoothies are common place in my house. Especially in summer. But even in this chilly weather I crave this rich, coconut-filled smoothie.
Skip over here if you want the recipe, but here’s a visual of my ugly (but yummy) drink…
2. BAKE IT
Now is the perfect time to make my ‘big hit’ muffins. Yes, I’ve bullied you into this before, but seriously, if you haven’t made them yet, now is the time.
Here’s the visual…
Serve them warm with rhubarb or tahini and honey and your tastebuds will be doing backflips.
3. ADD IT
Coconut is a brilliant addition to your breakfast porridge, muesli or polenta. If you missed my recent post on Warming Winter Breakfasts, I highly recommend recreating any of these three delicacies and throwing your fresh coconut meat in for good measure. I think it would go flawlessly with my chai-spiced porridge or steaming quinoa. YUM!
Or, here’s a reminder of the breakfast polenta idea I had…
Otherwise, if you simply can’t wait just grab that spoon and go for gold. It tastes equally delicious on its own, too.
Tell me Happies,
How do you like to serve your coconut?