I really hope that coconut farmers somewhere in the world are making more money than ever before. As a child, encounters with coconut were rare and almost always it was found in overly sweet macaroons or pies, boosted with artificial coconut flavor. In the past decades, coconuts have risen to a new status and the natural glory of fruit (it’s not really a nut!) is finally appreciated.
The flavor of a coconut is unlike any other. If someone has never tasted it, how would you even describe it? Even more astounding than its intoxicating aroma and taste is the versatility of the miraculous specimen. Coconut water, oil, milk, cream, flour, flesh, flakes, charcoal ash… there aren’t many other of Mother Nature’s edible miracles that produce such bounty.
Not only do coconuts taste amazing and have notable health qualities, it is often used in beauty products. One of my friends uses coconut oil to smooth dry elbows and even uses it as a facial moisturizer. From haircare and soaps to candles and household products, the useful attributes and dreamy aroma seem ubiquitous. All hail the coconut!
My original affinity for the miracle fruit has grown to adoration. I can’t get enough. A month or so ago, while experimenting with a restricted diet, I discovered a recipe for Paleo Coconut Muffins and have since tweaked it to my liking. Don’t expect the exact texture of traditional muffins. But, prepare to be surprised that this gluten-free, paleo muffin isn’t a dense puck either.
My kids didn’t know that they were missing anything (like white flour and butter) and eagerly gobbled them up. As you melt the oil, sift the flour, measure the milk and sprinkle the flakes, marvel at all that one little coconut has to offer.
Quadruple Coconut Muffins (Paleo and Gluten Free)
Makes 12 small muffins
6 eggs, lightly beaten
6 Tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup coconut milk (from a can)*
1/3 cup agave or honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease muffin tin liberally or use paper cups.
In a medium size bowl, combine eggs, butter, coconut milk, agave, salt and vanilla. Mix with a whisk until combined. In a separate bowl, sift the coconut flour and baking powder and combine. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold until just combined.
Pour batter into muffin tins until just a bit over half full. Sprinkle large, unsweetened coconut flakes on top. Bake in the oven for 15-18 minutes or until the center is set and a toothpick comes out clean.
Eat immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
* Coconut milk from a can is usually thicker than the coconut milk found in the dairy case