Our article ’10 Reasons to go Nuts for Coconuts!’ explores the incredible health benefits of coconut and we also look at the new coconut products emerging into the market, in particular coconut vinegars. Here we help you discover how you can use coconut vinegars to create a range of delicious and nutritious recipes that will have all of your friends and family asking you exactly what that special ingredient is!
This is a really tasty version of the hummus we’re all used to and best of all it’s so quick and easy to make. It uses organic natural coconut vinegar instead of lemon juice, which I think gives it a really unique twist. You could also try halving the amount of chickpeas and replacing with ground coconut for a sweeter taste. And why not drizzle with some coconut oil for the ultimate coconut experience.
- 400g Tinned Chickpeas
- 3 tbsps Cocofina Organic Coconut Vinegar
- 4 tbsps Water
- 2 tsps Smoked Paprika
- 10ml Cocofina Organic Coconut Oil
- Salt and Pepper to taste
Drain the chickpeas and rinse thoroughly under cold running water. Use a hand blender to blend the chickpeas and vinegar. Add the water a tablespoon at a time, blending in between until the mixture is smooth or to your desired consistency. Add the coconut oil along with the salt and pepper and one teaspoon of the smoked paprika then blend again. Spoon the hummus into a serving bowl and sprinkle the remaining smoked paprika over the top.
Coconut Vinegar Couscous
I love couscous. It’s the quickest food to make EVER and there are so many different things you can bung in it to make different meals. I’ve taken inspiration from the Greek Salad in this recipe and if I’m completely and utterly honest I also had some ingredients that needed using up. But that’s exactly what makes it so good, because you can have fun experimenting with different flavour combinations and in much the same way as pick and mix, you can pick and choose your favourite foods to create your own personal couscous. This particular recipes goes fantastically well with the Coconut Hummus recipe above, served with some toasted pitta bread on the side and topped with an omega 3 rich salmon fillet – YUM!
- 100g Couscous
- 100g Feta
- 1/2 Yellow Pepper
- 10 Black Olives
- Handful of Lemon Thyme Leaves
- 1 Red Onion
- 3 tbsps Cocofina Organic Coconut Vinegar (Chilli Flavour)
- Salt and Pepper to Taste
Cook the couscous by pouring over boiling water until it just covers it and then place a lid over the bowl. Leave this for approximately 10 minutes – it’s really that simple! Meanwhile finely chop the red onion, yellow pepper and lemon thyme leaves. Cut the feta into chunks and along with all the other ingredients, mix it into the cooked couscous. And that’s it! The heat from the couscous provides enough warmth and by keeping the vegetables raw you ensure optimum nutritional value.
This recipe actually came about as a bit of an accident. I did an online grocery order, which included some root ginger that I was planning on putting in a stir fry. When the shopping was delivered it turned out I’d gone a bit crazy with my weights – that’s what doing an online shop when you’re tired will do! So, rather than throw it all away or eat ginger based meals for the next fortnight I was keen to come up with one recipe that was very ginger heavy! Pickled ginger is popular in the Far East and is perhaps best known in the UK as an accompaniment to sushi. You could also add it to stir fries and salads or I think it works amazingly well with some creamy Brie or Camembert as a ‘poshed up Ploughmans’. Some people may chose to add a small amount of red food colouring to give a slight pink tinge to the ginger, but I prefer to keep it as natural as possible.
- 300g Root Ginger
- 250ml Cocofina Organic Coconut Vinegar
- 1 tbsp Crystal Salt
- 60g Sugar
- 3 tbsps Water
Peel and slice the root ginger as thinly as you possibly can. If you have one of those fancy mandolin slicers then great, do that, but otherwise just try your best taking care not to slice the tops of your fingers – no one needs that in their dinner! Place the ginger in a bowl and rub the salt into it with your fingers. I used Pink Himalayan Crystal Salt from Creative Nature Superfoods, as it contains 84 trace minerals and provides exactly the right coarseness to extract the juice from the ginger and help the pickling process. Cover and refrigerate overnight. The next day, squeeze out as much juice as possible from the ginger and then put the ginger in a sterilised jar. Put the remaining ingredients into a saucepan and heat until the sugar had completely dissolved. Make sure you stir the mixture throughout as the sugar can easily burn at the bottom of the pan if it is left. Allow the vinegar solution to cool and then pour over the ginger and seal the jar. Place the jar in the fridge for at least 3 days.
Coconut Chilli Chutney
This is so incredibly versatile and can be made to suit whatever you intend to use it for. I’ve made this version really chunky, which creates a more salsa looking chutney and is great with cooked fish and meats. But you could grate the coconut, ginger and chilli really finely to give a smoother, more jam-like texture, which would create a more traditional chutney.
- 1 Whole Coconut or (to make life easier) 200g of pre-prepared Coconut Chunks
- 2 Green Chillies
- 3 inch Root Ginger
- 90ml Cocofina Organic Coconut Vinegar – Chilli
- 200g Sugar
If you’re using a whole coconut you’ll need to get into the thing first to remove all the lovely coconut meat, oh and remember to save the coconut water as you’ll need that later. I’m no expert and would personally recommend buying the pre-prepared stuff, but if you like the idea of using a whole coconut I would suggest checking out the You Tube video at the bottom of this article for helpful advice on how to do it quickly and most importantly safely! When you’ve got your lovely white coconut (don’t worry if there’s still some of the smooth brown skin on it as this can all go in and has lots of fibre in it!) you need to chop it in a food processor. It’s entirely a personal preference at to how finely you chop it, in this instance I have chosen to go chunky! Finely chop the chillies and ginger and then mix in with the chopped coconut. Add all the other ingredients and give it a good stir, until the sugar has dissolved. Pour the chutney into a sterilised jar and ideally leave for a good couple of months to give it a chance to mulch down and absorb all those lovely flavours!
Asian Pesto Sauce
My whole family go mad for pesto and it has been a real store cupboard saviour on many an occasion. I wanted to create a slightly different pesto that could be used with noodles and had more of an Asian twist to it and the addition of Cocofina’s Chilli flavoured Organic Coconut Vinegar really helps with this. I might not tell the kids it’s in there though, because although it gives the pesto a slight kick that I’m sure they’d be able to handle, my daughter in particular pulls a face at the mere mention of the word chilli! I know it looks like a massive list of ingredients, but I promise you it’s really easy to make this versatile, verdant, aromatic condiment that works well with pretty much all fish, meats and vegetables.
- Large handful of fresh Thai Basil
- Large handful of fresh Coriander
- Large handful of fresh Mint
- 2 cloves Garlic
- 1/4 inch Root Ginger
- 2 tbsps Cocofina Organic Coconut Vinegar – Chilli
- 1oml sachet Cocofina Organic Coconut Oil
- Juice and zest of 1 Lime
- 1 Green Chilli
- 2 tbsps Honey
- 1/2 tsp Salt
Remove the seeds from the Chilli and then finely chop with the Root Ginger. After that you literally need to put all the ingredients in a blender or food processor, blitz until combined and et voilà yummy pesto!
The tomato ketchup you buy in the shops is absolutely riddled with sugars, preservatives and other things that aren’t particularly good for you. This ketchup uses honey as a sweetener and has lots of lovely spices to give it a much punchier taste. I’ve also used nutmeg flavoured coconut vinegar to accentuate the spices and to create a ketchup that can be used with a variety of different dishes. I love dipping sweet potato fries into it, or as a topping on a big, juicy homemade burger. If you store it in a sterilised container in the fridge it can be kept for a good couple of months, but it tastes so good, it’s unlikely to last that long!
- 900g Tomatoes
- 200ml Cocofina Organic Coconut Vinegar – Nutmeg
- 3 x 10ml sachets Cocofina Organic Coconut Oil
- 1 Onion
- 3 cloves Garlic
- 2 tbsps Honey
- Pinch of Salt
- 1/2 tsp Allspice
- 1/4 tsp Ground Turmeric
- 1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
Chop the onion and garlic and fry in the coconut oil until softened. Mix in the spices and then add the chopped tomatoes. Stir and then add all remaining ingredients. Cover and allow to simmer for approximately 2-3 hours on a low heat. About halfway through you should use a hand blender to blend it all down and then cover and return to the hob until the ketchup reduces down. Allow to cool and then pour into a sterilised bottle or jar.
Coconut Vinegar Ricotta
I stumbled across this recipe and was really intrigued by it, so knew I had to have a go at making it. Ricotta is an Italian soft white cheese made from the whey of the leftover milk. Sounds complicated right? But actually Ricotta can be made at home so, so easily and is much tastier than the stuff you’ll buy from the shops. To give it a slightly different taste I’ve used Cocofina’s Nutmeg flavoured Organic Coconut Vinegar. Once you’ve made the Ricotta it can be used in a variety of different ways; as a pasta sauce, layered up in lasagne (a veggie version using sweet potato or squash works particularly well with the nutmeg), as a bruschetta topping or it’s great as a healthy, easy to grab dip with veg sticks when the afternoon munchies hit.
- 1 litre Whole Milk
- 500ml Double Cream
- 3 tbsps Cocofina Organic Coconut Vinegar – Nutmeg
- Pinch of Salt
I promise you that just these 4 ingredients alone will allow you to make smooth, creamy tasting Ricotta and you’ll be able to say you’ve made cheese – I was so chuffed when I made it for the first time!
We used Cocofina’s range of Organic Coconut Vinegars in all of these recipes. The vinegars are available in three flavours; Original, Chilli and Nutmeg, and offer a distinct, tangy alternative to other vinegars. If you want to learn more about the health benefits of Coconut Vinegar and find out a bit more about Cocofina why not read our article ’10 Reasons to go Nuts for Coconuts!’, which features an interview with the coconut experts at Cocofina.