Dessicated Coconut Don’t Exist Here

18 April 2004

In the stores. You can dry your own, of course. But you can’t buy bags of coconut, sweetened or otherwise, in the stores here. Fahim asks why you’d want to when you can get it fresh here.

Well, I’ve asked Fahim previously if we could buy a coconut and scrape it and all the rest for use in either curries, sambols, or desserts, but no, it’s too much trouble.

First, you gotta have something to crack open the coconut with. A hammer? A really big, heavy knife? Yeah, sure. But we don’t have a hammer, and our knife would crack under the pressure. It’s a good enough knife for chopping vegetables and the like, but it’s unlikely to survive the arduous task of cracking a coconut.

But that’s only the first problem, and the more easily solved of the two. I could, for example, throw the coconut down the cement steps if I was really that desperate.

Or throw it against Fahim’s hard head. That would DEFINITELY do the trick. 😀

But scraping the coconut is a whole other ballgame.

And I really do enjoy mixing my metaphors, don’t I?

And then there’s the whole coconut water/coconut milk issue.

I think I need to start with some explaining.

You know that clear watery substance you get in the middle of that brown hard coconut that a lot of North Americans call “coconut milk”? It ain’t. It’s really coconut water. Coconut milk is what you get after you shred the coconut and squeeze all the liquid out of it. You can even add more water and squeeze again. Basically, squeeze the living guts out of the shredded coconut until there’s nothing left in the shredded coconut worth chewing on, and that’s coconut milk. So when you buy coconut milk in the stores, that’s what it’s from. It’s not just really thick coconut water.

So that brings us to the second problem. Shredding the coconut.

There’s a tool here that can be bought quite easily. It mounts with a C-clamp type of thingy onto tables or kitchen counters and it scrapes the inside of the coconut. But it takes a lot of time to turn the handle five million times to scrape all the coconut out of it.

I imagine there are other things you can do, too, like shredding it by hand on a metal shredding thingy, but that, I suspect would be even worse. Blood on knuckles worse.

If I had a food processor, I could use that to shred the coconut. Hey, Fahim, that’s a good Christmas/Birthday/Anniversary gift. Oh, hey, and only four months until our first anniversary. And isn’t the first anniversary appliances? (Hint. Hint. Hint. Like a lead balloon.)

Yeah, like I’d know.

So why do I bring all this up today? Because of Samaposha Aggala.

Oh, and on a side note, Fahim bought some chocolate kirrikan breakfast cereal. Has almost as much fibre as bran cereal – or more, depending on the make and model of said bran cereal – but chocolate flavored. Yummmmmmm. Well, sorta. It was kinda waxy like a lot of chocolate flavored cereals are – or at least the ones I’ve tried. I’m not a fan of chocolate flavored cereals and chocolate ice cream either, for that matter – most of the time, the flavor just isn’t quite right. Except for the chocolate ice cream here – it’s the best I’ve ever had. The Cargill’s brand chocolate ice cream. Way better chocolate ice cream than either Ben & Jerry’s or Baskin Robbins or Hersheys or. . . You get the drift.

We have a tub of Hershey’s chocolate ice cream in the fridge, and I’m sorry, but it just isn’t that great. Cargill’s, the store brand, you can get twice as much chocolate ice cream for 1/4 the price, and it tastes way better, too. Go figure.

And no, I don’t know what the North American equivalent name of kirrikan is – it’s a grain, that much I do know. But that’s about it.

Anyway. About Samaposha Aggala.

It’s basically samaposha, desiccated coconut, sugar, salt, and water – not difficult. You mix, form into balls, and then eat.

But desiccated coconut is impossible to find, so what’s a girl to do?

When Fahim buys a box – a kit, in essence – you just make it and be happy.

That’s the only way I know of, thus far, to get desiccated coconut. In a kit.

So I made it. And added raisins. It was pretty good. 😀

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About LMAshton

Howdy and welcome to my site! I'm Laurie and I'll be your, er, hostess today. :)

I'm a Canadian expat currently living in Singapore. I'm married to a Sri Lankan and lived in Sri Lanka for nearly a decade. We also lived in New Zealand for half a year.

I cook Sri Lankan curries, sambols, and mallungs. I bake bread using wild yeast (sourdough that isn't sour). I bake on the stove. I experiment with Indian / Malaysian / Indonesian / Thai / whatever cuisines interest me. And I experiment wildly.

Life is an adventure. Join me! :)

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