Desiccated coconut is a choice ingredient in a lot of coastal cuisines. Let us take a look at desiccated coconut calories and nutrition, and learn a little something extra about the deliciously nutty, edible part of this otherwise tough and fibrous coastal fruit.
The two basic items necessary to sustain life are sunshine and coconut milk.
~ Dustin Hoffman
Known in many Pacific, tropical and coastal countries as the Tree of Life, Tree of Abundance, Jewel of the Tropics and the Tree of Heaven the coconut tree is a complete storehouse of necessities that bestows upon mankind all that it needs to survive – delicious fruit to appease hunger, wholesome coconut water to quench thirst, tough wood to build boats and huts, and extremely strong and durable fiber and leaves that can be fashioned into ropes, mats, rudimentary clothing and bedding material. Perhaps this is the very reason why, in Sanskrit, the coconut tree is hailed as Kalpa Vriksha or Kalpa Taru, which roughly translates as the tree that fulfills all desires or wishes (Kalpa: wish; Vriksha/ Taru: tree)!
Desiccated coconut is nothing but the white, succulent meat of the coconut seed which has been scraped from the insides of the tough coconut seed shell. It is usually shredded or flaked and then dried to remove moisture. This dried and shredded coconut meat is often ground to for a fine powder before being used as a culinary ingredient. Now, let’s take a look at desiccated coconut calories and nutrition to better appreciate this wholesome and delicious cooking ingredient that gives all those tropical dishes that creamy texture and imparts a subtle, nutty flavor to all those seafood curries and gravies.
Desiccated Coconut Nutrition
Talking about calories and nutrition, desiccated coconut is a rich source of protein, carbohydrates and fat with trace amounts of calcium, iron and Vitamin C. A 30 g (which is a little more than an ounce) serving of desiccated coconut which is neither sweetened, creamed nor toasted contains approximately 190 calories, out of which an estimated 150 calories come from its fat content (including saturated, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats) alone! That being said, let’s now take a bird’s-eye view of the nutritional value of plain, desiccated coconut meat.
|Nutrient||Content Per Serving|
|Dietary Fiber||5.6 g|
|Vitamin C||1.3 g|
How do You Make Desiccated Coconut Yourself?
Wondering how to make fresh, desiccated coconut at home to add a tropical flavor to your chicken or seafood recipes? Well, help’s here! Read on to know what all you need to make fresh, desiccated coconut from scratch!
- Fresh, whole coconut – 1, medium-sized
Instruments You’ll Need
- Sharp edged spoon or knife – 1
- Fine grater – 1
- Microwave safe bowl – 1
- Baking Sheet
Method of Preparation
- Prepare the coconut by breaking the shell into two and pouring the water out in another clean utensil (preferably plastic, ceramic or stainless steel but not aluminum, copper or any other metal).
- Scrape the succulent, white meat out using the sharp-edged spoon or knife. This will be easier if you break the two coconut halves further into four or six pieces and scrape out the meat from these smaller pieces, one at a time.
- Shred the coconut meat that you scraped out using the grater to convert the coconut meat chunks into smaller, more uniform flakes.
- Place the shredded coconut meat loosely upon the baking sheet and place it inside the oven which has been pre heated to 250 °F.
- Do not clump or pack coconut flakes too closely as this will prevent proper drying out or uniform desiccation.
- Let the flakes cook inside the oven for about 7-10 minutes, making sure to check out the texture regularly to avoid over or under drying.
- Take the coconut flakes out of the oven once the flakes lose their creamy texture and become somewhat brittle
Store the desiccated coconut in an airtight jar, so that no moisture gets in. Air and moisture can cause molds to grow on the desiccated coconut, causing it to smell bad and get a patchy, greenish-yellow look. You can grind the desiccated coconut flakes in your blender to turn it into coconut powder. However, I would suggest you grind dried coconut flakes as and when needed rather than grinding the entire lot at once and storing it, as this will cause the powder to become somewhat greasy on long-term storage. That was all about desiccated coconut calories and nutrition along with the recipe for making it yourself, in keeping with Buzzle’s custom of throwing in a little something extra! Hope you enjoyed the experience!