The Coconut palm is an ancient plant with many fossils found with millions of years in age. Most authorities claim it is native to South Asia (particularly the Ganges Delta of India). The Indian state of Kerala is known as the Land of coconuts. The name derives from "Kera" (the coconut tree) and "Alam" ( "place" or "earth").
Throughout tropical Latin America coconuts are ubiquitous, they are available everywhere from roadside vendor to supermarket and are incredibly cheap, usually around 0,30 US$. They are offered in 2 forms green and husked, the first are usually for drinking the coconut water, which is now considered medicinal; the latter are used for the flesh, which is used in cooking.
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Cocos nucifera
ENGLISH NAME: Coconut
LOCAL NAMES: Coco, cocotero, pipa
PRODUCTS: oil, fibers, coconut water, coconut milk, dry shredded coconut, wine, syrups
NUTRIENTS: Coconuts are a great source of minerals for humans; the flesh has lots of fiber; the milk is high in saturated fats and should be consumed in moderation and with some of the fibers; the water also has many minerals plus vitamin C. For a detailed analysis of the nutrients follow the links below:
Coconut Water's Nutrients
Coconut flesh nutrient's
PROCESSING: In oder to use a coconut you first drain the water and then process the flesh. Below you will find some links to show you how to open a coconut and and make coconut milk:
How to open a Coconut
How to make coconut milk
STORING: Coconuts keep for weeks in a cool dry place, but they will become stale after a month.