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Note: This is a guest post written by Karen Rutherford
What is coconut flour?
Can you name another edible plant known to man that is more versatile than the coconut? You can drink its juice, eat its “copra,” utilize its oil for cooking or cosmetics and make use of its hairy husk shell to make charcoal. On top of that, you can even grind the dried coconut flesh into flour.
Despite its name, a coconut is not a nut, so people with nut allergies shouldn’t have a problem eating them. However, before you get into that big bag of coconut flour, there’s a handful of things you might want to know about what you’re getting into and how best to use it.
Coconut flour is a vegan flour that has more fiber and less carbs than other kinds of flour. It’s an easy-to-make product which only needs one essential ingredient – that is, coconut. Most importantly, it has plenty of health benefits.
Health benefits of coconut flour
Coconut flour is great for low carb baking because it is gluten-free with no cholesterol. It is low in carbohydrates and rich in protein. Also, you don’t need to add any sweeteners because it is naturally sweet.
As mentioned, coconut flour is also rich in fiber that aids the body for faster digestion, as well as MCTs (Medium-Chain Triglycerides) which promotes stable blood sugar and a healthy heart.
Coconut flour is suitable for people who have prediabetes, diabetes, and anyone else who wants to prevent blood sugar spikes.
Coconut flour is cost-efficient and is a great substitute for traditional flour because you can directly substitute it for the ordinary flour needed in the recipe.
It has a mild taste; with a texture that is similar to other flours. It can be used in a variety of recipes, including baked goods, pizza crusts, wraps, and veggie loaves.
Making homemade coconut flour
Are you someone that is tired of counting calories and holding back on your favourite desserts? Try using coconut flour as a healthy alternative or substitute ingredient in your favourite desserts, so you can indulge in your preferred snacks without the guilt.
Also, if you are looking to substitute all-purpose flour with coconut flour you can use 1/4 to 1/3 cup of coconut flour for 1 cup of wheat flour.
I guarantee you that this is the best homemade coconut flour recipe you can find. It’s very easy to make and the results are promising. So, let’s jump right into the instructions!
How to make coconut flour from coconut pulp
Ingredients for making coconut flour
- 2 cups of coconut pulp
- 3-4 cups of hot water
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 3-4 hours
Equipment you’ll need
- Baking sheet or dehydrator tray
- Jar/airtight container
- Baking paper
- Blender/ food processor
- Mixing bowls
Place the coconut pulp in a bowl then pour the hot or warm water into the coconut pulp.
Squeeze out the coconut milk using a cheesecloth, or you can use a sieve. Repeat this process three to four times.
You must extract the milk from the pulp because it is high in fat content, so blending it at high speed would turn it into coconut butter.
Before proceeding to the next step make sure that you completely squeezed out all the milk from the pulp.
Spread the coconut pulp on a baking sheet lined with baking paper, or you can use cheesecloth that is dry and clean.
Make sure there are no big bits of the pulp. It should be small crumbs and spread out evenly.
Leave the coconut pulp to air dry for a day, or you could bake it for three to four hours at 135°C / 275°F (or the lowest temperature that your oven can do).
You can also pan-dry it on a low heat, using a skillet, for around 20 minutes or until the pulp turns light brown. Let it cool.
Once the pulp is dried and cooled, put it in a high-speed blender or food processor for one to two minutes until it is fine in texture or powdered looking.
Put it in an airtight container like a jar and store it in a cool dry place. Homemade coconut flour is best used within a few weeks, but will stay fresh for at least two months int he fridge.
Using a dehydrator to dry coconut pulp into flour
Follow Steps 1 and 2 above to remove as much moisture as possible from the coconut pulp.
Spread the pulp evenly on a dehydrator tray.
Leave it overnight on a medium to low setting.
Ground or pulverize the dried coconut pulp into a flour-like consistency using a food processor or food blender.
Tips for using coconut flour in your recipes
- When replacing wheat flour with coconut flour, make sure to use 1/4 – 1/3 cup of coconut flour can be substituted for 1 cup of wheat flour. This is because coconut flour behaves differently than grain-based flours. You should not apply a one-to-one replacement since gluten-free batters tend to be thicker than those made with wheat flours.
- Coconut flour has a distinct taste so if you are a coconut lover you will most likely enjoy the result. However, if you are not a fan of coconut you may want to mask it with a stronger flavor like cocoa, garlic, or chives.
- Because coconut flour is naturally sweet you can lessen the sweetener or leave it as it is depending on your taste buds.
- One of the simple tricks in using coconut flour is to sift it properly before using it to avoid gritty texture in your baked goods.
- Make sure to scoop, and do not pack. When measuring coconut flour, you should scoop it up using a measuring cup and even it off with a knife. Ideally, you want to prevent packing it into a cup.
- Coconut flour can absorb a very large amount of liquid with just a small amount of flour, which may lead to dry baked goods, to avoid this situation use plenty of bananas. Mashed bananas are an ideal replacement for eggs, moisture and sweetness in vegan baking.
Time to try making your own coconut flour?
So there you have it! A simple recipe for making your own coconut flour at home.
I hope you enjoy making your own healthy coconut flour, right in your own kitchen, and using it in all of your cooking.
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