by nobert soloria bermosa on 02/08/08 at 5:56 am
The so-called “Tree of Life” provides us lots of things like handicraft products, medicine, lumber, wine, foods and many others. Here are some foods from coconut.
his summer when you visit the Philippines or other countries in the tropical region – the only place where you can find coconut trees – try our native foods made from coconut.
Here’s a list of native Filipino foods made or cooked from coconut.
Lumpiang Sariwa: Fresh Heart-of-Palm Spring Rolls
One of my favorites is lumpiang sariwa because it really tastes good. Its primary ingredient is the apical buds of coconut known as “palm-cabbage” or heart-of-palm. It is considered a rare delicacy, as the act of harvesting the bud kills the palm. Thus, fresh heart-of-palm salad is sometimes called “millionaire’s salad.”
Buko Salad: Shredded Young Coconut Meat
Buko salad is another personal favorite of mine and one of the most favorite desserts in the Philippines. Ingredients of this include shredded young coconut meat, fruit cocktail, pineapple tidbits, condensed milk, all purpose cream, and nata de coco (optional). Just mixed them altogether and then chill.
Para ng Niyog: Coconut Sprout
Coconut sprout are also eaten. Newly germinated coconuts contain an edible fluff of marsh mallow-like. It is produced as the endosperm nourishes the developing embryo.
Latik: Fried Coconut Milk Solid
This is produced when coconut milk is cook to extract oil. The solid residue is called latik. These are usually used as topping for maja blanco, rice cake (biko) and many others to add flavor making these native delicacies yummier.
Buko Pandan Salad
Another favorite of mine because of its unique aroma brought by the pandan leaves is the buko pandan salad. In preparing this salad, you’ll need pandan leaves boiled in water of the coconut, shredded young coconut meat, gelatin cut into cubes, kaong or sweet sugar palm, nata de coco (optional), evaporated milk and sugar. Just mixed them altogether and then chill.
Buko pie is a kind of pie in which, of course, the major ingredient is young coconut meat. It is available from all over the archipelago because coconut grow anywhere in the country. One of the best buko pies can be bought in the provinces of Laguna or in Nueva Vizcaya.
Minatamis Na Buko
This desert is very easy to cook. You will be needing shredded young coconut meat and sugar only. Caramelize the sugar then pour the shredded coconut strands, mix well, and wait until all the liquid had evaporated. You can eat it as it is or you can use it as a spread for sandwiches or bread.
This delicacy is prepared the same as minatamis na buko or bao but instead of using white sugar you will be using solidified molasses or locally called sinuklob, if it’s not available you can use brown sugar as a substitute. The matured coconut meat here is shredded. In some region, the coconut meat is slice into strips about ½ to 1 in. long.
Bukayo o Panotsa: Sweetened Coconut Balls
The same procedure with bukayo, just add some flour so that it will be easier to shape it in ball then add toasted sesame seeds as toppings.
Minatamis Na Bao
This is prepared the same way as the sweetened young coconut strand is cook. Just replace the shredded young coconut meat with a matured grated coconut meat.
Buko Juice: Fresh Young Coconut Water
Quench your thirst by drinking the purest and sweetest water on earth – buko juice. It is a refreshing drink throughout the humid tropics. The cavity contains sugar, fiber, proteins, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Coconut water provides an isotonic electrolyte balance, and is a highly nutritious food source.
Buko Palamig or Buko-Pandan Palamig
You’ll be needing water of coconut, sugar, shredded young coconut meat (buko) and evaporated milk. Mix them altogether and add crashed ice, there you have it an instant cold drink that will quench your thirst. For buko-pandan palamig, just replace the coconut water with water boiled with pandan leaves.
Nata de Coco
Nata de coco is a chewy, translucent, jelly-like food product produced by the bacterial fermentation of coconut water. Nata de coco is most commonly sweetened as a candy or dessert, and can accompany many things including pickles, drinks, ice creams, puddings and fruit mixes. Nata de coco is highly regarded for its high dietary fiber, and its zero fat and cholesterol content. No preservatives or other chemicals are added to Nata de coco.
Macapuno Ice Cream
Ice cream is a borrowed western food and has become a favorite the world over. One of the best-selling ice cream flavors in the country is the macapuno flavor most especially during summer.
Two of the major ingredients of this summer blockbuster quencher in the Philippines are buko or shredded young coconut meat and nata de coco.
Iced Buko (Popsicle) and Iced Candy
Another summer favorite by all ages, young and old, is the iced buko or buko iced candy. This is prepared the same procedure with buko palamig, just put the liquid mixture in a ready made plastic bag and put it in the freezer. After a few hours you already have an iced buko or iced candy.
Macapuno or Coconut Candy
A “gelatinous mutant coconut” cut into balls or strands. These are available anywhere in the country.
Uses of Gata (Coconut Milk)
Coconut milk has one thousand and one culinary uses in the Philippine cuisine. Here are some recipes that use coconut milk; from top to bottom, left to right- kaldereta (chicken, duck, beef, pork or goat meat), Bicol express (pork with chili), laing (rhubarb leaves and stems), ginataang kuhol(snail cook with coconut milk), ginataang mais – corn, paradosdos (mixture of sago, glutinous rice balls, jackfruit, banana, shredded coconut meat), ginataang langka(young jackfruit), ginataang chicken with spinach, ginataang tulingan (also applicable for other kind of fish), chicken – macaroni soup.
.Try all of these when you visit the Philippines this summer or other countries in the tropics. Try also our native wines made from coconut – lambanog and tuba. You will sure like these. You can try them at home too if you don’t have the chance to visit the tropics.
Enjoy cooking and happy eating.
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