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My first young coconut

jenergyjenergy Raw Newbie

Finally, I know what everyone’s been talking about.

I purchased and consumed my very first Thai coconut today. Wow! It was a little tricky to get into (ok, I bent a knife and nearly severed a finger) but SO worth it! Wow again. First I poured all the water into a glass and set it aside, then I scooped out all the wiggly-jiggly flesh into a bowl. Then I tentatively put a little piece in my mouth… I guess I was kind of expecting a coconut flavor explosion or something, but it was really mild and bland. But SO. VERY. SATISFYING. How can that be? It was almost sinfully good, like I almost felt guilty eating it because it just felt so decadent. And yet totally bland. Weird. Wonderful, but weird. So then, after I wolfed down the rest of the coconut flesh, savoring the feel of it in my mouth with every bite the way I do with avocados, I took a little sip of the water, thinking I’d save the rest for my smoothie tomorrow morning. WRONG! I chugged that stuff down in like three seconds.

All in all, a most exciting and satisfying experience. I hope they continue to carry them at the store where I got it. It’s the first time I’ve seen them in this town. I want more! I’m definitely going back for a few more tomorrow. They’re $1.48 apiece, which isn’t too bad, I guess. Not sure, having never bought one before. But a good organic dark chocolate bar would cost more than that, and I’d rather have the coconut!


  • Oh the memories, I can remember my first young coconut experience like it was yesterday!!!!! Best thing in the world! I’d almost say they’re magical!! I don’t know what I’d do without these suckers. Also, 1.48 is a pretty darn good price if you ask me, considering they’re usually between 1.99-2.49. By the way how the heck did you bend your knife? lol :)~

  • jenergyjenergy Raw Newbie

    Uh… well. I might have exaggerated a little bit there. ;o)

    But it WAS hard to open!

  • Jenergy, there are a few different techniques, but this is how I feel comfortable opening mine. Although I don’t peel the outer skin. Using the heel of the knife really does the trick for me! You’ll be a pro in no time~ :)


  • I remember how amazing I felt after eating/drinking my first young coconut too! I was surprised too at the slippery, almost tasteless yet weirdly still treat-like flesh (remindedme of an undercooked custard pudding) and especially surprised at how mild and un-coconutty flavored its water was comapred to what I expected! But boy did I feel some energy after drinking it! I also found it fascinating reading about the history and nutritional benefits of cocnut water too; how it so very close to the same ratio of our blood plasma and was used in WWI as naturally sterile emergency IV’s, saving numerous lives.

    Jenergy, you can also go to YouTube and type in “young cocnut” and see videos of people showing how to open them.

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    Help…how to open a coconut? thread has some good links for videos on opening up young coconuts. I really like the one posted by the Produce Picker.

  • jenergyjenergy Raw Newbie

    Thanks for the links, guys! Now that I know how great young coconuts are I’ll get them open by any means possible, but easier is always better. ;o)

    Can you imagine how HUNGRY the first person to eat a coconut must’ve been? Heh…

  • Luna bluLuna blu Raw Newbie

    My mother has a long drill bit that she bought specifically for drilling into the coconuts. You have to drill two hole so the water pours out easitly. Empty the t;hing, then put it into a couple strong grocery bags and smash it into the floor. I do not do it this way! You tend to get bits of pulverized shell in the meat!

    I place it on my work surface, take out my chinese cleaver, and hiyaa! bring that baby down with all my might! That puts a little slit into the top of the coconut. Then I place the tip of the cleaver into that slit and kinda pry a bit as i hold it over a glass to pour out the wonderful juice. Once the thing is empty, then I put it back downon the work top, and place the edge of the cleaver in the slit, it is kinda now ‘attacted’ to the cleaver. then with the handle of the cleaver I pick the whole thing up again and whap, smack it down on the work surface a few times untill it is in two peices. Then shovel out the meat and shovel it in your gut! I try to get it out in big enough pieces and julienne it for Thai noodles when I am doing a raw pad Thai!! I find this method extremely easy!

    Did any of that make any sense?

    jenergy, you are a funny girl :)

  • elizabethhelizabethh Raw Newbie

    i’ve got coconut opening down to an art so i’ll tell you the trick is NOT to try and open it with the whole length of the cleaver, but bring the force down with the heel of the knife. first make a hole in the top by angling the heel of the knife different ways, pour the water out, and then again use the heel to bang it on either side a few times and then pry it open with your hands. (i’m weak, if i can do it, anybody can). with some aim practice you’ll be an expert in no time!

  • rawclairerawclaire Raw Newbie

    When I first saw a young coconut, I thought the white outer husk was the flesh!! lol But then I opened it and it tasted spoiled. We kept getting new ones, and they were rotten. But then I realized, this is not rotten, this is what they’re supposed to taste like, DELICIOIUS!!!!. Absolutely amazing. So I drank the water and OMG that felt like I was drinking the most natural, energizing, refreshing Gatorade ever in the entire world of history. Althouggh the last time I drank Gatorade was like 400 years ago and I know its full of sugar and dye and alot of poisons but OMG, so refreshing!!! I just glugged it right down straight from the coconut and it was just the best drink I had ever tasted. And the meat, oh the meat I quickly discovered woul do alot of cool things like ice cream, desserts, shakes, and other things. When I would get a really good coconut, I sometimes wouldn’t waste it on an ice cream but I would just eat the thick met straight! It was the best thing I had ever tasted. Bland, like jenergy’s, but so amaizing!!

    Oh and I just open my coconuts by smashing their tops on the concrete outside. I don’t worry about the pieces of shell that get in there, I just push them aside with my hand! My mother is too paranoid to use a cleaver, apparently you can’t have both hands on the coconut when you open it with a cleaver. She was worried that she would accidently put both hands n the coconut and that’s a little scary. But I would definately move to Hawaii if the only reason was their coconuts.

  • achin70achin70 Raw Newbie

    Please see the technique on thenaughtyvegan.com. It’s a two pager. You can avoid all those nasty shards by doing it this way, and it’s really quick! :)

  • gosh, is there a coconut opener gadget?? i simply do not have the strength to open one myself and always have to get someone to do it for me. what a shame!

  • Luna bluLuna blu Raw Newbie

    Not that I know of! Brute strength here! :)

  • amysueamysue Raw Newbie

    So funny, I finally bought one and opened it today! We had them daily in Thailand and they were so beautiful with all the green on the outside and a straw stuck in it so I wasn’t aware of the brute force involved! I ended up using a hand saw. I don’t have a cleaver so I’m glad it can be done with a chef’s knife, but I’ll check out thenaughtyvegan.com. Unfortunately I’m missing the experience you had, jenergy, because I associate them with the food poisoning I picked up in Thailand. They were the “medicine” I was given to rehydrate – so I gave this coconut to my daughter instead! Love the snowy picture, Luna blu.

  • jenergyjenergy Raw Newbie

    Erg… food poisoning in Thailand. Sounds like a bad scene.

  • juicyjuicy Raw Newbie

    I am confused- are the young coconuts the one with the brown, hairy like outer shell? I can’t seem to find them anywhere in Toronto and the one i did buy, that was brown & hairy, did not taste good at all!

  • achin70achin70 Raw Newbie

    juicy: They’re green, but they get shaven down to a cone shape. They’re kind of a off-white color after they’re shaven. You can find them in Asian stores, or Whole Foods (expensive at Whole Foods).

    I’ve been told mature coconuts, the brown & hairy ones, look somewhat similar to the young coconuts. After the outer covering is removed, the large brown & hairy seed is removed, and that’s is sold in the stores. :)

  • snoopy99snoopy99 Raw Newbie

    when i opened my first one, i didn’t get much for meat, and when recipes call for 1 young coconut, are you supposed to get a lot of meat out of one? i seriously got maybe a 1/8th of a cup…i mean it was nothing…

    was my coconut bad?

  • achin70achin70 Raw Newbie

    Snoopy99: It was probably just very immature. The average seems to be at 1/2 cup of pulp per young coconut.

    Try to go for the larger, heavier ones, even though this is no guarantee, because sometimes it’s a lot of coconut water, very relatively little pulp. Sometimes I have better luck with a medium-sized one that’s pretty heavy for its size.

    It’s gone bad if the water has a pinkish tint, and a slightly off taste to it. I hear it will also smell bad, although I’ve never bought one that reached this stage. Try to avoid the ones where the moisture has gotten through the husk, and of course, any with mold on it.

    You can always ask the folks at the store to bring you out a fresh case, even if you’re only buying a few. I also try to go to stores where they keep the coconuts chilled. :)

    Honeygal: You don’t need much strength if you use the technique on the naughtyvegan.com. You need a little courage, but not much strength! :)

  • snoopy99snoopy99 Raw Newbie

    great..how long can you keep the coconut water once you opened it. I have had mine for a week now. but haven’t really given it the taste or look test.

  • I don’t think I’ve ever had a good young coconut. I’ve bought them a couple times. One seemed to be dried up inside and the other was purple inside. Now I’m reading some conflicting info about the purple color. Does anyone know if that really means it’s bad or what? It just wasn’t very appealing looking so I threw it away but it didn’t smell particularly bad.

  • A few weeks ago I had my first purple one, then yesterday it happened again. It tasted alright, not bad, not great. Purple, in my opinion, is the color of a very young coconut.

  • Ok, so I guess the purple color means not quite ripe.

  • achin70achin70 Raw Newbie

    LimeLady: Yes, I’ve drank some of that pinkish/purplish coconut water before, and it wasn’t especially bad. It smelled ok, but I was still kinda suspicious. I once opened a young coconut with absolutely no pulp, and pinkish/purplish water. So maybe you’re right! :)

    snoopy99: From my experience, the water keeps pretty well for about 4-5 days. I notice the longer I keep it, the pinker it gets. So that’s why I’m always suspicious when I open a young coconut, and the water is kinda pink. I’m a little paranoid about consuming food that’s past its prime.

    So the upshot is maybe pinkish/purplish coconut water is an indication of a very immature young coconut, or an indication that it’s been stored in the fridge too long. :)

  • achin70achin70 Raw Newbie

    I’ve been riffing on this issue in my mind, and here are my thoughts: Perhaps the water is pink in immature coconuts, and not as sweet, because the chemical composition of the sugars are not yet fully formed. After storing the water in the fridge for several days, the water starts to turn pink because the sugars start to break down, once again making the water less sweet. I don’t understand the science of it all, just trying to make sense out of it.

    Also, after visiting other raw food websites, it seems grey and smelly young coconut pulp is an indication of rancidity.

    So, purple – good! Grey – bad!!!! :)

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