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Coconuts & Thai Food Yum

Posted Mar 01 2011 10:32pm
Has this been the longest winter in recent memory?  Don't know the statistics but it sure feels like it! Spring is coming soon, but not soon enough...so to get thru the last cold days of winter, dream of the tropics...

A great way for to bring the tropics home? Buy a young thai coconut & open it yourself! Make sure you pick up a young thai coconut- they usually sell them individually wrapped in cellophane at the health food store. (If you get addicted like me, you might consider buying it by the case online which is much more economical.)

Coconut water is a great source of natural electrolytes- so much better for you than a Gatorade. And coconut meat is rich in good fats, medium chain fatty acids, vitamins & protein. Coconuts are the ultimate superfood. We always have a large jar of extra-virgin coconut oil as a nutritional supplement, for cooking and even as a moisturizer!
When choosing your coconut, pick one that feels dense & heavy, but you shouldn't really feel any liquid sloshing around inside. The coconut should be so filled with yummy liquid that there's no room to hear it...
Then cut away the white fleshy part around the top until the hard brown shell is exposed. Hack a slit with the bottom of the knife & then wedge the knife in to cut & pop off the top.
Once you get the hang of it, it's easy peasy- really!
Coconut water is so delicious & refreshing, you'll wish you had already opened ten more.

Don't forget to scrape out the precious coconut meat. It's a bit of a hassle & my least favorite part of the process, but so worth it, especially since these coconuts are not cheap. Put it in your smoothies or make a raw pudding or even better, make your own coconut milk!
If opening young Thai coconuts, leaves you wishing to indulge in Thai food, one can trek out to Woodside, Queens and have the best Thai food in all of New York at SriPraPhai Thai .

They have an extensive vegetarian menu, just make sure you tell them no fish sauce! My favorites are the crispy watercress salad with king oyster mushrooms with a delicious lime sauce, mint & cilantro.
And I always get the eggplant dish with a side of coconut rice, simple but so perfectly made- divine.

Then there's my favorite dessert, which is kind of like a mochi rice flour cake with coconut milk- the middle has either three little corn niblets or a little bit of scallion- strange but I just love the sweet coconut flavor & the chewy, light texture. I could easily eat this whole plate myself- don't think I didn't want to...

Yes indeed, I will be repeating all the things in this post quite often to get through the next three weeks of winter. Happy last remaining weeks of winter!
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