Bringing summer and tropical life into the winter day today. Eating tropical fruit in the winter in Europe is not the most logical. I normally opt for as much local and seasonal ingredients as possible, and I also feel that hot porridge in the morning and warm apples with cinnamon in the afternoon are great in these cold days. Though to get some diversity in dishes I allow myself to buy some foreign ingredients sometimes. It also helps me to slowly adapt to coming back to Europe since I have been eating this tropical food every single day for the last almost 5 years! And truly, isn’t it nice to treat ourselves on something luxurious sometimes? I found a fresh coconut on the Noordermarket earlier this week. It is 6 times the price of the buko in the Philippines but still, not more than when you go for a drink and it gives you a bottle of coconut water and a bowl of coconut cream that can last a couple of days.
Making coconut cream is super easy. Just open the coconut (best is to use a big knife), keep the coconut water to drink it, and scoop out the fresh coconut meat with a spoon and put it into the blender. Just add some coconut water, couple of spoons of coconut oil, coconut blossom sugar, a bit of salt and some vanilla essence (or vanilla bean). That is it! You could add some Irish moss paste or agar agar with hot water to make it more creamy, but if you don’t have those ingredients, it is fine without. Coconut cream will keep a couple of days in the fridge.
Found this beautiful plate, that i bought from a potter in the Fayoum oases in Egypt….years and years ago.
The small bird hiding behind the food reminded me of the work of the Japanese textile designer Akira Minawaga. Many years ago I visited his exhibition ‘mina perhonen’ in the textile museum of Tilburg. Breathtakingly beautiful, his work and also the titles of his creations. I completely fell for this jacket. It is called ‘home circle: let’s go to the forest until spring arrives’. It is the comfort and hope I find in something so beautiful, in the attention for detail, in a dream, in craftsmanship. I find the same comfort and inspiration in beautiful nutritious food. The type of healthy comfort food that can take you through the winter, until spring arrives.