September 2 marks World Coconut Day and it is an opportunity for you to utilise the multiple benefits of this tropical fruit which can be consumed in both raw and ripe form. Coconuts is often referred to as the wonder fruit because of the multiple benefits that it provides to mankind. A member of the drupe family, this fleshy fruit is usually found in the tropical countries. Coconuts contain various health benefits due to the presence of antioxidants, antibacterial, anti-fungal, and antiviral elements. Let us take a look at some of the dishes that you can prepare with coconut that do not compromise the flavour factor:
Toasted Coconut Rice
You would need four ingredients for this dish: Coconut Milk, Rice, Lime leaves, and Dry coconut for garnishing. Put the rice in a large saucepan with a well-fitting lid after you have washed it off the starch by running under cold water. Add coconut milk, lime leaves, and one teaspoon of salt, then stir.
Pour over enough boiling water to just cover the rice. Cook the rice for five minutes and then turn off the heat and leave the rice to steam with the lid on for 20 minutes. Garnish the rice with toasted coconut just before serving.
Given the neutral flavour of coconut, it can also be used to make delicious drinks perfect for a Sunday brunch. For this dish, you would need coconut cream, pineapple juice and white rum. Mix all the ingredients, in a mixer, with a few ice cubes to blend them all together. Pour the drink into a tall glass and garnish with a pineapple wedge.
Make your breakfast more flavourful and healthy with this unique porridge. You would need porridge oats, coconut cream, coconut milk, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Start by mixing the oats, milk, coconut milk, sugar, cinnamon and a pinch of salt in a saucepan.
Simmer the contents over low heat and cook for about 20 minutes, stirring every now and then to prevent the porridge from sticking to the saucepan. When it turns thick and creamy, add a dash of more milk if you like it thinner. You can also garnish your porridge with fresh fruits like oranges, grapes, or slices of bananas.
Make your tea-time even more eventful with the flavours of coconut cookies. You would need unsalted softened butter, flour, coconut, caster sugar, brown sugar, one egg and vanilla essence for this dish. Start by heating the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Beat the butter in a large bowl using an electric whisk until very soft and then add both sugar and the vanilla until light and fluffy, followed by adding the egg until just combined.
Sift in the flour and a pinch of salt and stir to combine. Add toasted coconut. In the next step, roll the dough into balls and arrange on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment. Flatten each dough ball slightly using the palm of your hand and bake for 12-15 mins until golden brown and slightly firm to the touch. Leave to cool on the sheet briefly, then transfer to a bowl to serve.
Coconut noodle soup
Inspired by Southeast Asian cuisine, this dish will certainly soothe your soul. The ingredients for this dish are coconut milk, mushrooms, red chilli paste, rice noodles, beansprouts and spring onions. Start by heating a large pan and frying red chilli paste. Add coconut milk and half a can of water and then bring the contents of the pan to boil.
Simmer it for 5 minutes until slightly thickened. Add sliced mushrooms into the simmering pan. As a final step, add the drained noodles, bean sprouts and spring onions, then heat for another minute. Serve the noodle soup dish in bowls.