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The other day I bought a case of coconuts from Whole Foods. They were on sale, 2 for $5 which is a pretty good deal. Prices can range from $1.50 – $5.00 apiece, depending on where you get them. When I find a good deal, I buy 1 or 2 cases, then process, and freeze all of them.
It may not be as optimal as buying fresh and using fresh, but I do the best I can, when I can. I hope that some of the information that I provide below, it will help de-mystifiy this amazing fruit!
The inside of a Young Thai Coconut can be a real mystery. They can look all dreamy and beautiful on the outside but you never know what you are going to get on the inside, much like a box of chocolates!
When you find a recipe that you want to try, it might ask for 2 cups of coconut meat or 1/2 cup of coconut water. The real question is, “Just how many coconuts will I need?” There is NO solid answer for this. You never know what you will get when you crack open a coconut. To show you just how different each coconut is, I documented the amount of meat/flesh and the amount of water/liquid that I got from each coconut.
Coconut #1 ~ Liquid 386 g = 1 3/4 cups ~~~ Flesh 94 g = 1/2 cup
Coconut #2 ~ Liquid 342 g = 1 1/2 cups ~~~ Flesh 100 g = 1/2 cup
Coconut #3 ~ Liquid 312 g = 1 1/2 cups ~~~ Flesh 124 g = 1 cup
Coconut #4 ~ Liquid 396 g = 1 3/4 cups ~~~ Flesh 118 g = 3/4 cup
Coconut #5 ~ Liquid 412 g = 2 cups ~~~~~~Flesh 54 g = 1/4 cup
Coconut #6 ~ Liquid 468 g = 2 1/8 cups ~~~ Flesh 204 g = 1 3/4 cup
Coconut #7 ~ Liquid 196 g = 1 cup ~~~~~~~ Flesh 36 g = 1/4 cup
Coconut #8 ~ Liquid 312 g = 1 1/2 cups ~~~ Flesh 132 g = 1 cup
Coconut #9 ~ Liquid 302 g = 1 1/2 cups ~~~ Flesh 96 g = 1 3/4 cup
As you can see the weight and volume of each coconut was all over the board. Sometimes the flesh was thick and hard to get out and other times it was almost jelly like. Both taste just fine. The more mature a young coconut is, the thicker the flesh, but to be honest I have yet been able to judge a coconut by its outward appearance.
In all the years that I have been cracking and opening these amazing jewels, I have witnessed pink flesh, no flesh, super thick flesh and jelly-like flesh. My best advice is to always buy 2 coconuts more than what you think you will need. And if you get a bad one just return it to the grocery store. Most stores are usually good about exchanging them.
I wrote a post several years ago on how to make milk and cream from Young Thai Coconuts. I also share some of the health benefits. So please visit there if you want to read more about them. You can even take coconut meat, add a little coconut water, blend it till smooth, and set it in the fridge and it will become a firm, smooth yogurt/pudding like treat! So, if you are new to using Young Thai Coconuts, I encourage you to give them a try. It can open a whole new world of possibilities. :)
Is this good or is this bad? I was originally taught that pink inside of an Young Thai coconut was a sign of mold and to stay away from it. A reader brought to my attention that this isn’t the belief anymore, so off I went to investigate. I am really grateful for that comment because it taught me new information! I have shared before that I now purchase all of my meat/flesh from ExoticFsuperfruits.com. As I was searching the web for more currant info on this topic, I landed on one of their pages.
This is what they have to say, “According to the FAO research from the United Nations, the turning pink of the coconut water is due to phenolic-antioxidant compounds that naturally occur in plants: these phenolic-antioxidant compounds are reacting with the enzymes of the coconut water.
Different varieties of coconuts contain different levels of phenolic-antioxidant compounds. The Fragrant variety of the Thai coconuts that we are using for our coconut water is particularly rich as far as these organic antioxidants compounds are concerned. Phenolic-antioxidant compounds have been widely studied in the wine and beer industry. These organic compounds will cause white wine, champagne or beer to occasionally turn pink or brown unless chemically treated and or preserved.
It is very important to understand that the pinking that we are observing with the coconut water is not creating any harmful substances. There is no connection between the pinking process of the coconuts with hygiene standards, levels of bacteria, nor any other contamination. The concentration of the phenolic-antioxidant compounds seems to vary from plant to plant and therefore from coconut to coconut.”