Friday, April 26, 2013

Coco over Coconut (flavored things)

I recently dabbled noncommittally with the Paleo diet, mainly in an attempt to cut down on dairy and gluten in my diet to see if it would make me feel any better. Cutting back on wheat definitely helped and since I'm mildly lactose intolerant, cutting back on dairy has been good too.

We definitely aren't ever going to go 100% Paleo, but what stuck with me from the diet is how frequently coconut products are used: coconut milk, coconut flakes, coconut cream, coconut oil, coconut flour. I fell head over heels with coconut all over again. Too bad Josh doesn't like coconut much. Too bad I've just had to eat these amazing coconut dessert recipes entirely by myself.

Coconut macaroons 

Macaroons are very different from the currently trendy macarons -- maybe not as fancy-looking, but much simpler to make and, in my opinion, even more delicious.

This is an adaptation of a recipe from a lovely Polish food blog. My adaptation makes a small batch - just eight small cookies for a perfect afternoon snack. It could not be any easier. It will take you less than five minutes to get them in the oven and less than one minute to inhale all of them when they come out of the oven.

1 1/4 cups of coconut flakes (I used unsweetened shredded coconut)
1/4 cup of sugar
2 large egg whites

Mix ingredients together with a spatula. Spoon portions onto parchment paper-lined baking tray. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until edges are golden-brown.

Coconut orange creamsicles

When I first saw this recipe on Pinterest, it said it contained coconut milk. Actually it doesn't, but I switched it up to be dairy-free friendly. I used Native Forest organic coconut milk, which I like to buy in bulk on Amazon (much cheaper than even Earth Fare). I like that their cans contain no BPA (a rarity even in organic products) and I like the full fat version; it gives great flavor and that creamy mouth-feel that you want in any ice cream product. Plus, coconut fat is good for you! Hurray!

For this batch I used fresh orange juice, because we got a huge box of naval oranges from Josh's dad's family, who had bought them as a church fundraiser. It takes about 5-6 large oranges to make a full cup of juice. I do much prefer fresh juice to store-bought, as to me it tastes much less acidic, but certainly use whatever you've got!

I found my popsicle molds for $1 at the Dollar Store (they are in stock right now for the approaching summer) that are similar to these.  I do love these chic ones and these could not be any more adorable.

1 cup of orange juice (fresh, frozen, store-bought)
1 cup coconut milk (full fat)
3 tablespoons honey or agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Whisk ingredients in a medium bowl. Pour into popsicle molds. Freeze 4-6 hours.

To loosen popsicles from the mold, run hot water over it for a couple minutes.

Both of these recipes were so amazing that Josh actually ate a serving of each... and came back for more. Coconut conversion complete.

Next on my coconut agenda is this coconut lemon curd frozen yogurt that looks ridiculously good.


  1. I hear ya! I'm obsessed with coconut too! And Cody can't stand it. I did get him to admit that the thing he dislikes the most is the texture of shredded coconut, so at least that was a step in the right direction. He might actually love those pops! I'm gonna give it a try this weekened since we have all the ingredients. Thanks for feeding my addiction.

    1. Do it! And maybe even don't let him know there's coconut in the popsicles...