Wednesday, April 18

I've Got A Lovely Bunch of Coconuts

Well, as part of our Chicka Chicka Boom Boom week, today the day care kiddos looked at a coconut. I bought two coconuts at Super Target that claimed to be easy open. MMMHHHMMM. And today at snack time, I took out the coconuts. First I passed one around and let the kids feel the outside of it. They told me what it looked like, felt like and sounded like. Then I used a corkscrew and a knife to punch holes in the eyes of the coconut so that I could drain out the water. I was going to have them taste the water, but I knew from experience that it tastes pretty gross. So, I spared them. Then, I worked on opening the coconut. I ended up having to bang it on my kitchen floor pretty hard, because hitting it with the blunt end of a knife wasn't doing the trick. They were surprised by how it looked on the inside. I let them know that the white stuff was coconut meat. One little boy told me he didn't want to try it because he didn't like meat. I had to tell him that it was a lot different than the meat we usually eat.

I then had to work on removing the meat from the shell and to also peel away all of the brown exterior off from the meat. My only problem was, I couldn't find my peeler. Maybe I don't have one. I attempted to cut it off with a knife and ended up slicing my thumb instead. Thankfully I bought shredded coconut too. Since I was unable to chop up the coconut meat correctly to blend it up and make coconut milk, I improvised and simmered shredded coconut and water in a pan.

Meanwhile, I gave each child a hand full of shredded coconut to taste and play with. Only the 14 month old liked eating eat. She gobbled it down pretty quickly. Everyone else decided that it was pretty yucky. But they sure did like to play with it and sprinkle it all around. I also took some shredded coconut and baked it in the oven to toast it. Once that was finished, we all tasted it and agreed that it was mighty yummy.

We then began making a German Chocolate Cake to eat after nap time today.

I was able to make a little bit of improvised coconut milk and it was very sweet. The kids loved it.

I found a neat recipe for Haupia, a coconut pudding usually served at luaus, and I hope to make it tonight for them to try tomorrow. I need to use the coconut meat currently sitting in my fridge to make the coconut milk, which is the main ingredient in the pudding.

So hopefully I am able to do that tonight without losing a finger in the process.

Here's the miss playing with the coconut shell and wearing it as a hat.