Coconuts and more coconuts…
Coconut vendors are EVERYWHERE on Brazilian beaches, and can be found on streets and squares all over Brazil.
The very first drink we had when we arrived in Brazil was coconut!
Coconut water is extremely nutritious and not high in calories. It has only 16-17 calories in 100 grams, and has high amounts of potassium and other minerals. Did you know that coconut water has more electrolytes than most sport drinks, and more potassium than bananas. I guess that is why it is a perfect beach drink, especially on a really hot Brazilian day!
Did you realize there is coconut water and coconut milk? There is and this is the difference. Coconut water (água de coco in Portuguese) is the clear liquid inside young green coconuts. But, be careful when you are asking for coco that you pronounce it correctly…otherwise you might be asking for poop! haha Anway, inside the coconut is a round cavity which is filled with this liquid, surrounded by a jelly-like substance. As the coconut matures the liquid evaporates, and the jelly hardens into the familiar white ” coconut meat”. It is refreshing drink, and in Brazil is usually served directly from a chilled fresh coconut, which has been opened on the top with a machete. This is the one I prefer!!
Then there is coconut milk. Coconut milk (leite de coco in Portuguese) is a product not of young green coconuts, but of mature, dry coconuts, and is a manufactured product not a natural one. To make coconut milk, the meat of a mature coconut is grated, then boiling water is poured over the grated coconut, and when the mixture cools, the coconut is squeezed to extract the milk. Unlike coconut water, coconut milk has a high concentration of fat, and the result of the first “squeezing” of grated coconut is sometimes called coconut cream, with subsequent “squeezings” producing coconut milk. Coconut milk is rarely served as a drink, and its primary uses are in cooking. In Brazil, coconut milk is particularly associated with the cooking style of the state of Bahia. Coconut milk is also used in many Thai and Polynesian dishes. Coconut is creamy and tastes great but I pass on it…too many calories for me!
Here’s an interesting fact…Fresh coconut water is even used as an intravenous hydrating solution in some tropical areas where no saline solution is available.
Have a great day. It’s Wednesday already…still counting the days til Monday!!