all over my bowl of fruit. (You get the picture.)
And then there's Coconut Secret. Hats off to my friend, Bryan Au, for turning me on to these wonderful raw coconut products. I'd heard of coconut flour, but coconut vinegar, coconut nectar, coconut crystals, and coconut aminos were all brand new to me, and I was quite eager to try them all!
As much as I adore the flavor of coconut, coconut vinegar, nectar, crystals, and aminos don't taste at all like coconut. That's because they're made from the nutrient-rich sap that exudes from coconut tree blossoms, rather than the coconut fruit. (This makes them perfect for those coco-phobes out there!) What you do get are raw enzymatically alive products that are grown without chemicals, pesticides, or herbicides, and taste as good or better than the alternatives.
I've been enjoying the delightful earthy flavor of Coconut Crystals in place of sugar with my morning grapefruit and Coconut Nectar instead of agave with my afternoon herbal tea. Both are low-glycemic and sweetly delicious.
A broiled grapefruit sprinkled with ginger, cinnamon, and
Coconut Crystals brings a bit of sunshine to the start of my day!
I fell in love with Coconut Aminos Soy-Free Seasoning Sauce. It's a blend of aged coconut sap and sun-dried mineral-rich sea salt that boats a smoky, much lighter-than-soy-sauce flavor. I preferred it with sushi over tamari or soy sauce, as it has a wonderfully mellow flavor that does not overpower with its saltiness.
I tried cooking with Coconut Aminos in place of soy sauce, and I was delighted with the flavorful results. It worked beautifully in the Unfried Fried Rice and Lettuce Wraps with Hoisin-Mustard Tofu from Appetite for Reduction. And I was thrilled to see that my local Market of Choice carries Coconut Aminos Soy-free Seasoning Sauce, as it will now be a staple in my pantry.
I added little bits of "tofu egg" to the fried rice to remind me of the rice we used to order at the Dragon Seed Restaurant in Jackson Heights, NY every Sunday night when I was growing up. I recall that we always had to order everything without bean sprouts, because my mother would be horrified if a bean sprout came within 100 feet of our table.
Coconut Vinegar was a nice departure from other vinegars. I like the idea of using it instead of apple cider vinegar to make "buttermilk" for baking, by mixing it with So Delicious Coconut Milk.
I love to cook and bake with Coconut Flour. Chocolate Chip Coconut Flour Pancakes with Raspberry Sauce seemed like the perfect way to treat myself after a long, hard week at work. So we had these for Sunday brunch!
Now that I've let you in on my little coconut secret, you can explore Coconut Secret's website, share, and enjoy!
Chocolate-Chip Coconut Flour Pancakes
adapted from a recipe on http://vegweb.com
1/3 cup Coconut Secret Coconut Flour
2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour -or- gluten-free flour mix
2 tsp baking powder
1 Tbs evaporated cane crystals
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbs canola oil -or- coconut oil (thank you, Karen!)
1 1/4 cups So Delicious Original Coconut Milk Beverage
1 Tbs pure maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
Heat a large skillet or pan for 2-5 minutes. Lightly spray the pan with cooking spray.
Mix dry ingredients until well combined. Make a well in center, and fill with wet ingredients. Add chocolate chips, and mix until combined, but still a little lumpy. Spoon batter onto pan. I use 3 tablespoons per pancake. Cook until bubbles appear on top, about 3 minutes, then flip and cook for another 1-2 minutes until golden brown. Serve with raspberry sauce. Makes 8 pancakes.
Simple Raspberry Sauce
4 cups raspberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup Coconut Crystals
1 Tbs cornstarch or arrowroot mixed with 2 tablespoons water
Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, for about 15 minutes until the sauce is thickened. (If using frozen raspberries, it will take a little longer.) Remove from heat, and let stand for at least 10 minutes before serving. Makes: 3-4 servings.