In a new series of features, we’re championing the unsung store cupboard heroes and discovering new ways to make the most of our ever-handy dry stores
This week we head to Marshord Organic Foods in Northam to swot up on the various ways to cook with that most useful of super foods – the mighty coconut …
Not just a throw-back to dodgy schools dinners, desiccated coconut is one of those store cupboard lurkers that often doesn’t get the love it deserves. Try adding a tablespoon to spicy Thai crab cakes, liberally sprinkling over granola or rolling dark chocolate truffles in a good coating of the white stuff.
Marshford’s owner Vanessa Ebdon lives by the mantra, ‘a curry a day keeps the doctor away’, and no good curry is complete without a hearty chunk of creamed coconut. Coconut milk also works well, but creamed coconut will give it a luxurious velvety texture.
Gluten free baking has seriously upped its game since coconut flour went mainstream. Waffles, doughnuts, tray bakes, flapjacks – even the good old vicky sponge – you name it, coconut flour can own it. But be wary when cooking with this protein-packed powder; coconut flour has ultra-absorbent super powers, if you’re substituting it for regular plain flour, you’ll only need 50g of coconut flour for every 150g of conventional flour, plus raising agents.
Coconut oil is a fab alternative to olive and plant oils; workin’ it in the wok it’s the perfect base for both silky smooth Goan curries and zingy Thai stir-fries. The creamy oil also makes a great companion to sweet flavours – try frying pancakes in coconut oil and topping with blueberries and honey at your next brunching session.
Coconut water may have been the super food trend of 2014, but with an ever expanding list of nutritional benefits, we’re not hanging it up with the skinny jeans, Victoria Beckham crop or frozen cocktails of yesteryear just yet. Drink chilled straight from the fridge, or mix it into a cracking cocktail – we’re all over coconut G&Ts (gin, coconut water, gin and a slice of lime).
Find all of these unsung cupboard heroes at Marshfood Organic Foods in Northam near Bideford, along with a great selection of other organic goodies and fresh produce.