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A coconut pie recipe, Mexican style and not too sweet
Rob Rabine -
April 26, 2012
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A coconut pie recipe, Mexican style and not too sweet
To fish or not to fish - I had to quickly make up my mind. All the other guys at the table were going tomorrow and the unspoken pressure was on me to be “a real man” and go fishin’. On the one hand, we would be out on the water in my friend’s boat, with all those fabulous views of the bay, drinking a couple beers. On the other hand, we would be getting up way too early, racing for two hours in a 24 foot boat across 4 foot swells to catch lots of nothing (not to mention that any body parts sticking out get sunburned because you’re out there for eight hours). Or, I could go to the beach club with the girls, rent a cabana for the day and have waiters walk through burning sands to bring me things.

Hmm…All I can say is that this real man got his feet sunburned.

We all had had this Yucatan-Style pie at a terrific little fish shack in downtown Vallarta. I contacted them a couple of times for the recipe but they never got back to me, so here is Rick Bayless’s version, hardly second rate. If you like coconut, you’ll be hooked. It has a wonderfully chewy texture and it’s not too sweet.

Yucatan Style Coconut Pie

(From “Rick Bayless’s Mexican Kitchen”, Scribner 1996)

Serves 8

For the crust:

1 cup slivered almonds, toasted

3 tablespoons sugar

2 cups finely chopped fresh bread crumbs

3 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the pie:

1 medium size coconut with lots of milk inside

1 cup heavy cream

3 large egg yolks

1 teaspoon vanilla

lightly sweetened whipped cream

Prepare the crust: pre heat the oven to 325 degrees. Place ½ cup slivered almonds and the sugar in a food processor and pulverize. Add the bread and pulse until reduced to fine crumbs. Drizzle in the melted butter and pulse thoroughly. Pat the mixture into a 9-inch pie pan. Refrigerate for several minutes to set.

Twist a corkscrew into 2 of the eyes of the coconut, and then drain the water into a bowl through a strainer, set it aside. Place the coconut on a sheet pan and put it in the oven for around 15 minutes to loosen the flesh. Crack it with a hammer into a few pieces and pry the flesh from the shell with a screwdriver or oyster knife. Cut the dark skin from the flesh, place in the food processor and grate to medium-fine shreds. Measure out 2 ½ cups for the pie and set the rest aside.

+ Wexico

Make the pie: Raise the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Combine the coconut water, cream and sugar in a small saucepan and simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently, until reduced to about 1 cup (10 minutes). Pour into a large bowl and add the rest of the coconut, the remaining ½ cup of almonds, egg yolks and vanilla. Mix well, scoop into the prepared crust and bake on the middle rack in the oven for 30-35 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack. While the pie is baking, place the reserved coconut on a sheet pan and toast in the oven for 5-7 minutes until lightly brown. Use as a garnish with lightly whipped cream.

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