Monday, May 16, 2016

Coconut, a collection of recipes.

I happen to love Coconut. I spent some time on the Island of St. Lucia in the 70's.
I discovered that I have enough Coconut Recipes to gather them in one Post on the Blog.


Coconut Recipes;

I decided to start with my recipe for Fried Plantains. They were fried in Coconut Oil. This Post includes my Story and Photographs.

St. Lucia:

I spent some time in the West Indies on the Island of St. Lucia back in the 70's. I was growing out of my Hippy stage. Maybe it was the end of that era in my life, or maybe not. We were quite carefree on the island. Anyway, I experienced the culture and the food of the West Indies and a few memories have remained with me.
I stayed in a house on the side of the mountain. There were no actual windows in the house. It was an amazing view of the Caribbean Sea.
Just off the opened living area were many Cashew trees. It was the first time I had ever seen them. We had a cook that would arrive everyday and plan meals for us. It was the first time I had experienced fried Cashew Nuts. He would cook them in coconut oil , salt them and serve them hot. The taste was incredible.
He taught me how to climb a coconut tree and I have a picture of that experience somewhere in my thousands of photographs of my worldly travels. I may have to post that someday so that my grandchildren will know that I wasn't just telling them a crazy story.
The chef would shave strips of fresh coconut and fry them in coconut oil. They were an afternoon snack served with a traditional St. Lucian cocktail.
The last food that I experienced for the first time was a fried Plantain.
Prior to that trip, I had never even seen a Plantain.
He would slice them, fry them, smash them and refry them, salt them and serve them as a chip for another afternoon snack.
I absolutely loved all of the new foods that I experienced.
I continued to make these items when I returned home from the island.
I never really had a recipe for the Plantains but I had my memories of watching the chef prepare them.
My children and grandchildren recently took a trip to Puerto Rico. It's another island that loves Plantains. As they were describing the foods that they experienced on the island, it brought back memories of St. Lucia. I was especially interested that they had eaten Fried Plantains and liked them.

Here is my recipe for Fried Plantains as I remember them:
I hope some of my readers will make this recipe and create a new food memory.

4 Green Plantains
Vegetable Oil ( on the island it was always Coconut Oil)
Salt

Peel and slice the Plantains on an angle 1/4" to 1/2"
Preheat the oil in a cast iron skillet
In small batches, fry the slices for 2 - 3 minutes on each side
Remove, drain on paper towels ( they drained them on pieces of brown paper bags)
Use a meat mallet ( or whatever you have on hand that would smash a Plantain ) I use a stainless steel measuring cup, smash them to 1/8"thick
Place them back in the oil and fry 2 minutes per side, until golden brown and crispy.
Drain again and sprinkle them with sea salt
I've included a dipping sauce recipe, but you can just eat them without it if you choose.

Mojo Sauce :

1/4 C olive oil
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 TBS finely chopped cilantro, parsley or rosemary... etc. ( whatever herb you have available).
Salt to taste

Combine oil and garlic in a saucepan
Heat on low for about 5 minutes
Remove from heat
Place in a serving bowl
Add herbs and salt
Dip the crispy Fried Plantains in the sauce


Here's another sauce that can be used as a dipping sauce ;
This one comes from Bhutan, a country in the Himalayan Mountains.

1/3 C olive oil 
2/3 C sour orange juice (or half and half regular orange juice and lime juice)
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped 
1/2 tsp cumin, ground 
1/2 tsp salt 
1/2 tsp pepper 

Prepare the same as the previous sauce.



Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Vintage slides
of St. Lucia:
the rough side of the island

this may be the island of Filicudi off the coast of Sicily.
Oh Well, another story , another time!
That was definitely a Hippy experience during
my many travels!

one of the grand pitons

the view from the opened living space in the house


I salted them with my Rosemary infused Sea Salt



















I like a pie with a crust, but I don't always have time to make a crust. I'm not a fan of store bought, frozen pie crusts. So, I like pies without a crust when I want a quick dessert. I've previously posted my favorite recipe for Apple Pie without a crust, it's one of my favorites that I make often.

Coconut Pie without a Crust:

4 eggs
3/4 C sugar
1/2 C flour
1/4 C butter, melts
2 C whole milk
1 1/2 C coconut
1 tsp vanilla

Beat the eggs in a small bowl
Combine sugar with flour in a separate bowl.
Mix eggs, sugar/flour mixture and all remaining ingredients together in a bowl.
Pour into a 10" pie pan prepared with a baking spray. I use my Pan Release Mix.
Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.
Do not over bake.
Center may not appear to be set, but it will when it's left to cool.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Another recipe from my mother in law.
A classic dessert to take to a neighborhood gathering or a church function.
Make it for your family!

Coconut Pineapple Cake

2 C flour
2 C sugar
2 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1- (20 oz.) can of crushed pineapple (with juice)
1 C coconut
1 C chopped pecans

Sift dry ingredients together.
Add all of the rest of the ingredients, mix well and pour into a 9"X13" pan prepared with a baking spray. (I use my Pan Release Mix)

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.
Cool completely.

Make the frosting and ice the cake:

8 oz. package of Cream Cheese
1C Confectioner's Sugar
1/2 stick of Butter
1 tsp Vanilla

Beat until smooth and ice the cake.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


It's time to start thinking about Summer and this vintage Tropical Pie. It was an Eagle Brand Recipe that has been adapted and re done many times.

Sweetened Condensed Milk was a very common ingredient in many American desserts. I find it often used in recipes from my vintage cookbooks.
Eagle Brand makes Sweetened Condensed Milk.
Gail Borden was granted the patent for Sweetened Condensed Milk in 1856.
Although Borden received the patent in 1854 for Unsweetened Milk, it was not successfully canned until 1885 by John Meyenberg.
Borden add Evaporated Milk to the product line in 1892.

Summer No Bake Tropical Pie:

1 Pre-Made Graham Cracker Crust
1 C flaked Coconut
1 (15.25 oz.) Can Crushed Pineapple, well drained.
1 C Maraschino Cherries , drain and reserve 1 TBS of the juice, chop the Cherries.
1/2 C Chopped Pecans
1 C Sweetened Condensed Milk
5 TBS Lemon Juice
1 (8 oz.) carton of Whipped Topping (Cool Whip) Thaw if frozen.


In a large Mixing Bowl:
Coconut Flakes
Pineapple
Cherries
Pecans
Condensed Milk
Lemon Juice
Cherry Juice
Mix Well.

Fold in Cool Whip.
Pour into Crust and refrigerate overnight.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

Here's a recipe from one of my vintage Mennonite Cookbooks.

Million Dollar Pie:

This recipe makes 2 pies.
Here's what you'll need:
2 - 9" Pie Crusts, Graham Cracker or Pastry Crust


In a large Mixing Bowl:
1 Can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed
1/2 C Chopped Nuts
1 ( 16oz.) can Crushed Pineapple with the Juice.
3 TBS Lemon Juice
1 (12oz.) Carton of Cool Whip, thawed if frozen.
Mix Well.

Pour evenly into the 2 Pie Crusts.
Refrigerate overnight or Freeze.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


I found the next recipe in the archive files of my Aunt Faye, For those that haven't read the blog from the beginning, I started and dedicated this blog to my Aunt that was a Professional Chef for a very wealthy family in Michigan.
I have all of her recipes.

Pineapple Souffle :

Here's what you'll need:

Tear a 20" - 22" length of Aluminum Foil; fold lengthwise in half.
Wrap around a 1 Quart Souffle or Straight Sided Baking Dish, to form a 4" collar above the top edge of the dish.
Tie with string.


1 Envelope of Unflavored Gelatin
1/3 C Lemon Juice
4 Eggs, separated (separate yolks and whites)
1/4 tsp Salt
1 1/3 C (15oz.) Can of Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk.
2 1/2 C  (1lb.) Can of Crushed Pineapple

In a Double Boiler:
Sprinkle Gelatin over Lemon Juice, allow to soften.
Add Slightly beaten Egg Yolks and Salt.
Cook over Hot Water, stirring until Gelatin dissolves. (about 3 minutes).

Add:
Sweetened Condensed Milk.
Pineapple with the Juice.

Remove the top of the double boiler from the heat and place over ice water.
Stir frequently until it mounds when dropped from a spoon.

In a large bowl:
Beat Egg Whites until stiff.

Fold Gelatin mixture into Egg Whites.

Gently turn the mixture into the Souffle Dish.
Refrigerate for 5 hours or until firm.

Carefully remove the foil collar to serve.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!




This recipe is originally from The Saddlebag Lake Resort Cookbook from 1956. It's in Yosemite National Park. I love vintage recipes like this. This is a very simple pie.

Coconut Macaroon Pie:

2 Eggs, beaten
1/2 C Water
1 1/2 C Granulated Sugar
1/4 C Flour
1/4 tsp Salt
1 stick (8TBS) Butter, melted
1 1/3 C Sweetened Flaked Coconut + additional for garnish.
1 unbaked 9" Pie Crust

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl:
Eggs
Water
Sugar
Flour
Salt
Butter
Whisk well.
Fold in the Coconut by hand.
Pour filling into the crust and sprinkle with additional Coconut Flakes which will brown as the Pie bakes.
Bake for 45 - 55 minutes. It should be golden brown. Rotate the pie half way through baking time.
Check it to make sure it doesn't brown too quickly. You can always make a foil tent to stop the browning and finish the baking time.

Remove the pan to a rack and cool completely before serving.
It's even better if it's refrigerated for 3 hours.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



We have an incredible French Bakery and Bistro in our little town in Texas.  It's hard to believe but we are fortunate to have it.
We had 19 family members for dinner a few weeks ago and the meal was amazing. You can't imagine the assortment of pastries and cakes and macarons that are available for dessert, along with some very creative french pastries, all made by their French Pastry Chef. My nephew said to the server, "don't you have anything regular like  Coconut Cake?" She said, I'll check...... and came out with the most incredible large layered Coconut Cake. Three people ordered it and said it was the best Coconut Cake they had ever eaten.
I don't have that recipe but this recipe is equally moist and delicious and it's made for a crowd in a Jelly Roll Pan. Guaranteed to please any Coconut lover.

Coconut Sheet Cake:

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
1 - 18" X 13" Jelly Roll Pan (Half Sheet Cake Pan), brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar.

2 C Flour + 2 TBS  Measure it out together. (it will be used together in the cake preparation)
2 C Granulated Sugar
8 TBS Butter, room temperature.
1 C Water
1/2 C Shortening
1/2 C Buttermilk
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
2 large Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla
1 tsp Coconut Extract
1/4 C Sweetened Shredded Coconut

Icing:
8 TBS Butter, room temperature
6 TBS Whole Milk
3 1/2 C Confectioner's Sugar
1 tsp Coconut Extract

Additional Sweetened Shredded Coconut for the top of the cake.

In a large mixing bowl:
Flour
Sugar
Whisk well and set aside.

In a saucepan on medium heat:
Butter
Water
Shortening
Bring to a boil
Add this mix to the Flour bowl.
Stir by hand to combine well.
Add these ingredients in the following order, stirring after each addition.
Buttermilk
Baking Soda
Eggs
Vanilla
Coconut Extract
Mix well.
Fold in Coconut.

Pour the batter into the pan.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Remove to a rack, immediately poke holes throughout the cake with a blending fork. (the tunes are usually larger than a regular dinner fork)
Pour the icing evenly over the cake.


Icing.
In a saucepan on medium heat:
Butter
Milk
Bring to a boil, stirring until the butter is melted.
Add:
Confectioner's Sugar
Coconut Extract
Whisk until smooth.


When the cake is Iced, sprinkle evenly with plenty of additional Sweetened Shredded Coconut.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!



I often refer to recipes as Church recipes. If you've ever been to a Church Supper, Luncheon, Breakfast or a Church Festival you know how amazing the food can be. Everyone is asked to bring a dish and most people bring their favorite family Casserole, Salad or Dessert. And...... you walk away from any Church meal with a new recipe.
Here's just one more of those recipes that I wanted to share.

Pineapple Coconut Church Cake

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
1 - 9" X 13" baking dish, greased with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.

Batter:
8 TBS Butter, room temperature
2 C Granulated Sugar
2 C Flour
2 Large Eggs
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Vanilla
2 - 8oz. cans of Crushed Pineapple, undrained You need a total of 16 ounces of undrained crushed pineapple.

Frosting:
8 TBS Butter
1 C  Granulated Sugar
3/4 C Evaporated Milk
1 C Flaked Coconut
1 C Chopped Pecans
1 tsp Vanilla

Batter:
Butter
Sugar
Milk
Coconut
Pecans
Vanilla
Mix well by hand with a spoon.
Pour into the pan.

Bake for 35 - 40 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack and allow to sit while you make the Frosting.

Frosting:

In a saucepan on medium heat:
Butter
Sugar
Milk
Stirring constantly.
It will begin to boil.
Cook for 5 minutes.
It will begin to thicken.
Remove from heat.

Add:
Coconut
Pecans
Vanilla
Mic well.
Pour evenly over the cake.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


I love Coconut Pie but I like it simple and without Meringue. This is a vintage recipe that's simply Coconut, delicious without Meringue. Individual slices can be served with Whipped Cream.
This is the Coconut Pie that Aunt Faye made.



Here's what you'll need:
1 - 9" prepared and baked Pie Crust. You can purchase it or make your favorite one.

1 C Whole Milk
1 C Sweetened Flaked Coconut
1 C Half and Half
1/2 C Granulated Sugar
2 TBS Cornstarch mixed with 2 TBS Cold Water.
2 Egg Yolks
1 tsp Vanilla

In a double boiler on medium heat:
Milk
Half and Half
Sugar
Bring to a Boil.
Remove from heat and set aside.

In a small bowl:
Corn Starch
Water
Stir well.

In a small bowl:
Egg Yolks
Whisk until light yellow.
Add:
Corn Starch
Mix well.

Add the Egg Yolk mixture to the double boiler mixture.
Cook on medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Remove from heat.
Add:
Vanilla
Coconut
Mix well.
Set aside for 30 minutes.

Pour into the Crust.
Cover with plastic wrap.
Refrigerate 30 minutes.

Individual slices can be served with Whipped Cream.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


Coconut Cherry Christmas Bars:

This could be classified as vintage iconic American. I think Betty Crocker did a similar version of it and it's been adapted through the years. Here's my favorite recipe for Coconut, Cherry Bars.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
1 - 8" X 8" pan brushed well with Pan Release Mix. (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour. I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated in a jar. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.
Yield: approximately 16 bars - 2" X 2".

Crust:
1 1/2 C Crushed Graham Crackers
2 TBS Dark Brown Sugar
A Pinch of Salt
8 TBS Butter, melted

Filling:
1 Can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 C Flaked Coconut

Icing:
1 1/2 C Confectioner's Sugar
2 TBS Butter
1/2 tsp Vanilla
1 TBS Maraschino Cherry Juice
1/2 C Chopped Maraschino Cherries

Crust:
In a mixing bowl:
Graham Crackers
Sugar
Salt
Butter
Mix well to combine.
Press evenly in the bottom of the pan.
Bake 10 minutes.
Remove pan to a rack to cool completely.

Filling:
In a small mixing bowl:
Milk
Coconut
Whisk well.
Spread evenly over the Crust.
Bake 25 minutes.
Remove pan to a rack to cool completely.

Icing:
In a medium mixing boel:
Sugar
Butter
Vanilla
Cherry Juice
Cherries
Mix well.
Spread evenly over the Filling.
Cut into Squares.
Transfer to a serving Platter.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


This is another Vintage Recipe from a newspaper in Kansas dated Sept. 20, 1981. It was in-between the pages of one of the cookbooks that I bought at the Mennonite Central Conference Sale at the Kansas State Fairgrounds. My wife is from a neighboring town. We try to attend the Sale every Spring. I started this Blog with vintage recipes from my Aunt Faye and I'm an avid collector of vintage recipes.
According to the article, this was a first place winning recipe at the Kansas State Fair. It was entered by Kathryn Robinson from Buhler, Kansas. It was entered in the Governor's Cookie Jar Category.

I'm posting the recipe as it was written in the Hutchinson News. Sunday, September 20, 1981.

Choco - Coconut Bars

1 1/2 C Flour, sifted
1/2 C Brown Sugar
1/2 C Margarine (today I would use Butter)
1/4 tsp Salt
1 - 6 oz. package of Chocolate Chips
2 Eggs
1 C Brown Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
2 TBS Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 Salt
1 1/4 C Flaked Coconut

Combine first four ingredients; work with pastry blender until crumbly.
Pat evenly into engrossed 13 by 9 by 2 inch pan.
Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes.
Sprinkle chocolate chips over the hot crust; return to oven for about 1 minute to soften.
Remove from oven and spread chocolate evenly.
Beat eggs until thick and light colored; beat in sugar and vanilla.
Stir in flour mixed with baking powder and salt, then coconut.
Spread evenly over chocolate layer.
Bake at 375 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes.
Cool and cut.
Makes 3 dozen 3" by 1" Bars.

Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!


I've posted several recipes for Poke Cake. It's an American Iconic Cake. I put it in the same category as Dump Cake. All of them are easy, delicious, decadent and totally unhealthy. That's what makes them so good.

The following are all of the ingredients needed for this recipe + the ingredients to make the Cake according to directions on the box.










German Chocolate Caramel Poke Cake.

Preheat the oven according to the recommendation on the Box of Cake Mix.
1 Box of German Chocolate Cake Mix baked according to directions on the Box for a 9" X 13" Pan.

After the cake is baked:
Remove it to a rack to cool for 15 minutes.
Poke holes in the cake, every 1/2" with the handle of a Wooden Spoon.

Evenly pour 1 - (14.oz) Can of Sweetened Condensed Milk over the entire Cake.
Allow to soak into the Cake completely.

Sprinkle with 1/2 C of Flaked Coconut.

Drizzle evenly with 1/2 of a Jar of Caramel Topping.
Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Spread an 8 oz. container of thawed Cool Whip over the entire Cake.

Chop 5 regular sized Snickers Candy Bars & sprinkle them evenly over the entire Cake.

Drizzle with remaining Caramel Topping.



Enjoy!
Peace in the Kitchen!

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