January: Coconuts

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 4 people

  • 1 mature coconut
  • 2 young coconuts
  • 1 cup finely grated light palm sugar
  • 4 tsp agar-agar powder (see note)
  • 4 thinly sliced kaffir lime leaves
  • ½ cup water
01   Open the coconuts. You will need 3 cups of the combined juices in total. Remove flesh from young coconut with a spoon, place in a blender with reserved coconut juice and process until smooth, then pass through a fine sieve and discard solids. Place coconut mixture and ½ cup finely grated palm sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, scatter over agar-agar powder and bring almost to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Pour into a 15cm square pan and allow to set for at least ½ hour. Preheat oven to 180C. Remove a 50gm piece of flesh from a mature coconut, slice thinly widthways using a mandolin, place on an oven tray and roast for 5 minutes or until lightly golden. Combine kaffir lime leaves, ½ cup finely grated palm sugar and ½ cup water in a saucepan over medium heat, bring to boil and cook for 5 minutes or until reduced by half. Cool. Makes ½ cup. Serve coconut jelly with papaya, drizzle with kaffir lime syrup, scatter with roasted coconut and serve immediately.
Note

ALSO IN SEASON

Fruits
Apricots, bananas, berries, cherries, currants, lychees, mangoes, mangosteen, melons, nectarines, passionfruit, peaches, pineapple, plums, rambutans, starfruit and tamarillo.

Vegetables
Asparagus, avocados, beans (butter, green, snake), capsicum, celery, choko, cucumber, eggplant, lettuce, okra, peas, radish, squash, sweetcorn, tomatoes, zucchini and zucchini flower.

Seafood
Atlantic and Australian salmon, banded morwong, goldband snapper, bigeye tuna, roes abalone, Balmain bugs, blue swimmer and mud crabs, Sydney rock oysters, bay prawns and rock lobsters.

Note Agar-agar is a setting agent made from seaweed. It sets quickly without refrigeration. Available from health food and Asian grocery stores.

Recipe:

ADELAIDE LUCAS

Photography:

BRETT STEVENS

Styling:

ADELAIDE LUCAS

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