As I my interest and experience in consuming natural foods, unprocessed foods, I have stumbled upon young coconuts a lot. They have always been a daunting prospect and I did not think I would really enjoy the flavor since I have tried coconut juices on the market and did not like them.
But, I decided that I cannot knock it until I try it. I have been eating more raw foods for awhile now and felt like I was ready, my palate was ready. I am always trying to find things give my children to drink that are healthy and whole so I thought they might like to drink the water out of the coconut: fun for a kid, right?
I started by referencing Natalia Rose’s book The Raw Food Detox Diet, which I use quite a bit for information, inspiration and great recipes. I remembered reading her instructions for cracking one and needed to refresh my memory. Wouldn’t you know it? I opened the book right to the page of instructions the first time! I love serendipitous moments like that, I see them as a pointer that you are moving in the right direction.
Her instructions are great and I only have a slight variation on them:
She recommends that you purchase a cleaver. I am still not sure what she means by this but I used my large Japanese butcher knife and it worked fine. You will also see an example that I am providing from another website at the bottom of this page.
She also recommends that you use a wooden cutting board. I took this one step further and placed a kitchen towel over the board for extra grip and also to catch any loose liquids that escape. This is bound to happen when you are first trying this out.
Now, you just lie the coconut on its side and aim the pointy top in the direction of your strong hand. I am right handed so I aimed it toward that arm. Then you keep your other arm down, do not bother holding onto the coconut. It will stay put and you do not want to risk a cut. From there you systematically strike the coconut at the head with your strong arm. Don’t go crazy just lift your arm up about shoulder height, bring it down gently to spot where you want to hit and then swing up and strike down. Use your other hand to turn the coconut and do it again and again until you have made your way around the whole coconut. The top will either pop off or pry off and you have liquid gold inside.
So, now that I had it open, and my two little boys were standing still in awe of what their Mommy had just done, I poured the liquid into cups for us all. Peter, my 15 month old, was straight away in love with this drink. Graham, 2 and a half, had a few sips and then asked for juice: I prepare fresh pressed juice for them most days. Then I started to scoop the coconut flesh, which was surprisingly soft and, especially at the bottom, gelatinous. Peter was equally charmed with the flesh part and Graham was equally nonplussed. I really liked the liquid. The flesh was alright but it might take me awhile to really catch on there. I am excited to have this as another weapon in my arsenal of replacements to the more current, processed foods available.
If you are unsure of what a young coconut is it is important to ask your grocer. I buy the ones that are shaved down, white with plastic wrap and are refrigerated at the market. Also, I have found a great website resource that has great instructions with photo demonstrations. They show you how to make a coconut smoothie! The company is Living-Foods and they also sell cases of the coconuts if you are interested.
I will share any recipes or other uses I find with this wonderful new food discovery in future posts!
Be sure to tune in every week during the month of August, as I will be presenting my Summer Cancer Prevention series of articles, including an Interview with Charlotte Gerson, daughter and protege of renowned cancer healer Max Gerson, MD!
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Love and light,