Coconut Ice Recipe

My first memories of Coconut Ice are from my primary school years, where one of our school holiday babysitters made it one day. Despite the childhood associations and, of course the fact it contains sugar, I was never particularly fond of this confection as it contains that most dreaded of ingredients – copha. The fatty residue that copha leaves on my tongue renders any otherwise tasty treat sadly into a nasty treat.

However, in digging around for recipes for the upcoming Carribean dinner at our recipe club, I’ve come across a recipe for Coconut Ice that doesn’t contain copha, and actually matches the description on the tin – it is a ¬†frozen coconut dessert. That said, it does taste a lot like the other Coconut Ice ¬†so it has the added bonus of having childhood associations, too, just without the copha.

I’ve made this twice now, and it is quick and straightforward. The icing on the cake is that it doesn’t require an icecream maker, so I can theoretically decide to make it in a morning and then eat it in the evening, which will be great coming into summer!

The original recipe is from the Island Flave website.

Ingredients

  • 200g dessicated coconut
  • 200mL warm water
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • pinch of cream of tatar
  • 2 cups (500mL) full cream milk
  • almond essence
  • 1 egg (but really we just want the yolk)

Method

  1. Mix the coconut with the water in a small bowl to rehydrate it. Pack it down and then cover with cling film. Set it aside for at least 10mins.
  2. When coconut is rehydrated, separate it using a fork, then scoop out 1 cup (250mL) of the coconut and place it in a large mixing bowl with the sugar and cream of tatar.
  3. Put the remaining coconut into a fine sieve, pack it down, and place the sieve over the mixing bowl.
  4. Heat the milk in a saucepan, without stirring, until the milk is about to boil.
  5. While the milk is heating, separate the yolk from an egg, and place in a small container. Beat the yolk until it is runny.
  6. When the milk is ready, remove from the heat, remove any film from the top, then gently pour it through the sieve. Press down on the coconut with the back of a spoon to squeeze all the milk through. Discard the coconut from the sieve as it is now pretty tasteless.
  7. Stir the mixture until the sugar is dissolved. Mix in the egg yolk and a few drops of almond essence (no more than 1/4 teaspoon or it will taste very almondy).
  8. Pour the mix into a 1L container and place in the freezer for a few hours or overnight.
  9. While in the freezer, the mix will separate and the top will go hard. So, at least a couple of hours before serving, remove the mix from the container, break into chunks, and blend well with a stick mixer or blender, before returning to the freezer.

Dulce de Leche Pionono Recipe

The upcoming recipe club dinner is themed Argentina, so I’ve been looking into Argentine desserts. It seems that the key ingredient is Dulce de Leche – basically a thick, sweet caramel sauce – so it was a given that this sweet ingredient would feature.

Helping me along, I came across a great website called From Argentina With Love that had an interesting-sounding recipe for Pionono (an Argentine dessert roll), from which this recipe is heavily based. I also had some assistance from this other Pionono Recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup plain flour
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • extra caster sugar
  • 200mL whipping cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 200g dulce de leche (I used Nestle Top-N-Fill Caramel)

NB. The Nestle Top-N-Fill Caramel is basically caramelized sweetened condensed milk, and was available as a 380g tin in my supermarket in the section along with cooking chocolate and vanilla extract.

Method

  1. Heat the oven to 200 degrees Celcius.
  2. Take a shallow tray, 25cm x 38cm (I think it’s sometimes known as a swiss roll tray), grease it, line the bottom and sides with a sheet of grease-proof paper, then grease the paper.
  3. Sift the flour into a small bowl and set aside.
  4. Put the eggs, sugar and honey in a large mixing bowl, and beat with a mixer on high for at least 8 minutes, until the mixture expands to several times the original volume and forms a marshmallow consistency.
  5. Add the flour into the mix, and continue to beat for another minute until well combined.
  6. Pour the mix evenly across the tray (even the corners), spreading with a flat knife if necessary.
  7. Place in the oven, and cook for 8-10 mins. It will be done when the cake springs back at a light touch. You may want to rotate the tray after 6 mins to ensure it cooks evenly.
  8. While waiting for the cake to cook, get a clean and dry (non fluffy) tea towel. Lay it out and sprinkle lightly with caster sugar. Use your fingers to ensure it is covered evenly.
  9. Take the tray out of the oven, invert it onto the tea towel. Remove the tray, and gently peel off the grease-proof paper.
  10. While still hot, roll up the cake in the tea towel, and set aside to cool for a couple of hours.
  11. During this waiting time, prepare the filling. Pour the cream into a mixing bowl and beat until stiff peaks have just formed.
  12. Add the dulce de leche and vanilla and stir to combine. Then beat for another minute or so, until the mixture thickens. Place in an airtight container and chill in the fridge.
  13. When the cake is cool, unroll it, spread the filling across it, and re-roll. Ideally, serve immediately, but it will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for another day or two.

When serving, slice into generous chunks. Serves 6-8.