Coconut Butter

Two very exciting things today:

1) I got my electric oven! I've been fully prepared to bake for about 2 1/2 weeks now, except for that tiny detail of having an oven. Joy!

2) My first baking experiment (I call it experiment because I've never used convection before, and table-top ovens tend to cook food different anyway so I didn't know what would happen!): COCONUT BUTTER! I had no idea such a thing as coconut butter existed until we spotted a jar of Artisana on Bainbridge earlier this year. It runs $10 a jar, but it is totally worth it!

Although this is the 'land o' coconut', people here don't eat coconut butter (or use coconut oil). I don't know why, but they're really missing out! I've read online of lots of people making their own coconut butter using desiccated coconut. Often times it ended in disaster. I was a little bit wary because of that and the fact that I only had fresh grated coconut, so I would have to dehydrate it myself. Enter: oven.

I bought my fresh coconut at the morning market a few days ago and froze it until I needed it. The flakes ended up toasting more than they should have. Perhaps I should have lowered the temperature a bit, but toasted coconut is delicious in itself right? So why not in coconut butter. I've read that the blending process could take a ridiculously long time (like an hour in some cases), but my blender was working so hard that it got hot, which heated up the coconut and made it smoother and easier to blend. Coconut butter is a solid at room temperature, so it needs no refrigeration, and you have to heat it up in order to spread it. I ended up blending it for probably less than 5 minutes.

I spent a dollar on the coconut, and I probably ended up with about a cup of coconut butter. Artisana coconut is pure white, while mine is a little brown because of the toasted flakes. Nevertheless, I call it a success! Maybe I could turn this into a business....

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