We talk a lot about coconut oil here . It’s one of the best forms of good fat, and has so many other amazing health-promoting properties. But did you know that there are many other foods that come from the humble coconut? This simple tropical fruit offers up a truly incredible number of delicious and nutritious products for us to enjoy.
Do the words Obesity, Alzheimer’s, Heart Disease and Cancer scare you?
What if there was a food that was almost as healthy as breast milk that could literally fight cancer, combat aging, accelerate fat loss and reverse Alzheimer’s?
It’s Coconut Oil.
Here are 9 reasons why you should eat it as much as possible… Read Now!
Coconut butter is basically coconut puree. In contrast to the coconut oil, where the fat is pressed coconut meat, coconut butter still has the fibrous component of the flesh left. The result is a perfect treat with a fudge-like texture and amazing flavor.
Coconut butter is highly nutritious thanks to the balance of healthy fats and fiber. Here at The Alternative Daily, we recognize that natural fats, vegetable and animal minimally processed are an essential part of a diet rich in nutrients. Therefore, we recommend coconut butter as an ideal snack choice for those times when you feel a bit hollow or want something sweet.
It satisfies a sweet tooth without increasing your sugar levels in the blood, because the small amount of sugar is denied by the fiber content. In addition to the coconut butter as a high-fat healthy snack also try mixing in bakery products or homemade ice cream.
Note that these are not the same as cocoa butter. Cocoa butter is an edible vegetable fat from cocoa beans and used in sweets and cosmetics.
The best choice is butter unsweetened organic coconut. If you can not find a good quality product at your local store, it is quite easy to make your own. All you need is a little desiccated coconut and a food processor.
Simply fill in your food processor or halfway two-thirds full of nuts unsweetened desiccated coconut. (Check for a brand that does not have the added oils, as some contain vegetable or soybean oil)
Start the food processor slowly, then speed up and process the coconut flesh for about thirty seconds. Stop when you notice the mixture begins to stick to the sides of the food processor. Scrape the bowl and process again. Repeat until all the coconut flesh is transformed into a thick, delicious butter. Scoop it out in a jar and store in the pantry, no refrigeration required. That’s it!
You may find that, during storage, the oil separates from the flesh of the coconut and hardens on top. This is perfectly normal – just put the pot in a warm place or run some hot water over it for a minute or two. The oil will soften – then you can mix it back into the butter.
This is the type of coconut that is often used in desserts, such as squares and buttons. However, it is often mixed with unnecessary unhealthy ingredients, such as vegetable oil and sugar. If you buy an organic unsweetened variety, you can enjoy the flesh of pure walnut dried coconut without guilt!
Try grilling desiccated coconut in a pan in the oven until lightly browned to bring out a delicious caramel taste. Also look for coconut or “flakes” “shaved” dried, which comes in large loops – these are perfect for adding homemade granola or trail mix.
Coconut also contains less sugar fructose, only about six percent. Fructose is said to be difficult for the liver to process. Although coconut sugar can be a smart choice for a sweetener, it should still be consumed in moderation.
Fresh coconut and young coconut
Coconut flesh made a fresh delicious snack or dessert. It takes some effort to break a coconut yourself, but many supermarkets sell fresh coconut container, which makes for a practical solution.
If you choose to purchase and open your own coconut, here is the method:
When shopping for a coconut, make sure you pick it up and shake it. It should be heavy with a quantity of sound liquid sloshing around inside. If it does not have any liquid inside the coconut is likely and dried.
- At home, set up a soft surface on the floor. A folded towel works great. It’s better to work on the floor so that if the coconut is difficult to control, less damage is likely. It is also less apt to roll around and get away from you.
- Grab a hammer and nail. Find the dots on the coconut that make it look like a bowling ball. These parts are weaker, so they are the best place to start trying to puncture the coconut.
- Once you’ve made one hole, wiggle the nail around to work your way through the flesh. Now place the coconut on top of a cup with the hole facing down to let the water inside run out. If the water won’t come out, try expanding your nail hole, adding another one at the same end of the coconut, and/or carefully nailing another small hole into the opposite end of the coconut to allow for the entry of air.
- Let the water drain fully — it might take several minutes. You can drink the delicious fresh coconut water!
- Now wrap the coconut in the towel and place the package on a hard floor that is resistant to damage. Carefully hold the package and knock the coconut firmly with the hammer as many times as needed. The goal is to break the shell into several manageable pieces.
- Now you can remove the white flesh from inside the thicker shell. The flesh will still have a thin brown skin stuck to it — this is okay to eat. Eat immediately or store in the fridge in a sealed container for no more than three days.
Young coconuts are softer and easier to open. Just put the coconut on the side and use the regular chef’s knife to carve away the thick white crust of the pointed end. Then pierce the inner shell and cut a “lid” circular you can then remove. Remove the soft inner flesh gel and drink fresh juice inside!
Coconut water is the liquid that comes from the fresh coconut. It is slightly sweet and very tasty, plus it is one of the best sources of natural moisture! Sugars, minerals and arising in coconut water are very nourishing for the body, so it is essentially a true food sports drink. Try it on ice on a hot day, or make popsicles out of it!
Coconut milk and cream
These creamy delights are made by expressing the liquid and coconut fat in the flesh. Coconut milk contains less fat and can be paid, while the coconut cream is thick enough that you have to pick it up with a spoon. Both are excellent sources of healthy fat.
We recommend avoiding varieties of “light” or low in coconut milk fats, as these are usually thickened with food additives like guar gum or carrageenan. It is best to eat and enjoy the fat of the coconut in its natural state.
If you do well digest dairy, coconut milk or cream is a great option to have with your coffee, tea or homemade granola. It also works well in recipes, like grain-free pancakes, breads and muffins.
Did you know that yogurt can be made from coconut milk? It is manufactured using a process similar to regular yogurt, but did a great non-dairy choices. When buying, stick with brands that have fewer ingredients and no added sugar. Better yet, try to make your own!
Coconut kefir boasts an even greater dose of probiotics as compared to yogurt. It is made from simple coconut milk or coconut water which was cultured with kefir grains. The probiotic yeast and bacteria consume the sugars in coconut milk and thicken in kefir.
If you have your own kefir grains, you need to switch between batches of coconut milk and ordinary cow’s milk because the grain can only live in coconut milk for a limited time.
Take some dried coconut flesh and grind, and you have coconut flour! This is a great high-fiber, grain flour without that you can use for all your cooking without grain.
Be aware that coconut flour absorbs a lot of moisture and has a crumbly texture. Therefore, you should only use a bit in the recipes, and more eggs are often necessary to keep the finished product together.
We recommend referencing existing recipes and not simply swapping coconut flour for regular flour! It might take a little experimentation to get a feel for it, but after a few tries, you’re sure to find that coconut meal is delicious with a nice tasty pastries and natural sweetness.
The next time you visit the supermarket or health food store, keep your eyes open for some of these delicious coconut products that you might not be familiar with. If you can not find at the store, try to order them online or even make your own!
Want to know more about coconut …. just get this Coconut oil Ebook
Did you know that coconut is just as good for you on the outside (on your hair and skin), because it is inside? We like to use the coconut oil to natural hair products and even DIY care concoctions!
– Liivi Hess
Liivi is an Integrative Health and Nutrition Coach is training to become a doula. It inspires women to find peace and personal power by taking control of health and the natural fertility. Liivi’spassion is the ancestral nutrition and design of primitive life style. She and her partner live between Toronto, Canada and Queenstown, New Zealand.