Hey everyone! Or who ever it is that reads this. I have not abandoned this blog, though it would appear that way. I cannot believe my last post was from the beginning of July! Man, how times flies. I have just been so busy with life that I kept putting this blog on the back burner. Aside from taking a few trips and working, I have also started culinary school! I am now on track to become a pastry chef, and I could not be more excited!
But I am glad to be returning to this blog finally, it is about time.
Today I will be sharing my experience making coconut bread. Coconut is one of those ingredients I am most passionate about (others for example being basil, pistachio, rosewater). When I found this recipe on Martha Stewart’s website months ago I bookmarked it immediately.
You can find the original recipe here.
Anyway my mom liked sweet things for morning food, and we were all out of bakery, so I thought I’d give this bread a try.
Stuff You’ll Need:
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup milk [I mixed skim milk and half and half]
- 1/2 cup grated dried coconut [remember, use unsweetened!]
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Mix well.
In a separate bowl, lightly beat one egg.
Add vanilla extract (I think vanilla bean paste would be awesome too).
Combine the egg/vanilla mixture with the dry mixture. It will not moisten the dry mix very much.
The egg mix with just kind of lump up with the dry mix, don’t worry. When you add milk it will get really moist.
Add the dried UNSWEETENED coconut flakes. It is very important to use unsweetened coconut, because if you use sweetened coconut then the bread will be too sweet. Also, the density/moisture of the sweetened coconut would detract from the bread.
Unsweetened coconut is not usually found in the baking aisle of regular supermarkets (why, I don’t know). I most often see it frozen. In health-focused grocery stores (such as Whole Foods and Earth Fare) you will see it in the baking aisle. You can also find it at Indian grocery stores, and it usually is priced lower there.
Add the milk. Mix until well blended and all of the dry mix is completely moistened.
My note: The recipe just says “1/2 cup milk.” In my house we usually just have skim milk, but as this bread has no fat (no butter, no oil) I felt skim milk would not boost the flavor/texture as good as 2% or whole milk would. I solved this by using 1/4 cup skim milk and 1/4 cup half and half. Using coconut milk would also be an interesting way to go!
Grease small loaf pan. And when this recipe says small loaf pan they mean SMALL LOAF PAN. I used a typical/standard/regular loaf pan (forgive me, the dimensions escape me at the moment) and when I took the bread out of the oven I was like WTF!
The loaf was super flat. The pictures of the bread online looked much taller than my result and I felt depressed that I had seemingly failed. I almost wanted to throw it away because I was sure I had messed it up.
But after going and reviewing the recipe I saw I had done everything correct. So I watched the video of it being made, and when I saw the loaf pan the chef used I was like, THAT IS WHAT I DID DIFFERENTLY!
The loaf man they used was like super mini.
So the bread was fine, it just was not as tall. Flavor and texture were spot on. Baking time decreased though from 60 minutes to 40 minutes, as such a shallow bread needs less time to bake all the way through.
Overall I was really pleased with how this bread came out. It is not overly sweet, and the coconut flavor is really present in every bite. You can enjoy it with a fruit spread (such as Trader Joe’s Mango Butter) or margarine/butter. Though I found it was perfect without any condiments!
And no, Trader Joe’s is not paying me to plug them, I wish they were though I love that place!