I love the versatility of coconut. The water in the middle of the fruit is full of electrolytes and makes for a refreshing drink. The meat can be dried and flaked to make any number of dishes. The dried meat can also be powdered for flour, or the oil can be pressed out for coconut oil. Coconut offers many nutrients, including potassium, lauric acid, and healthy fatty acids with anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties.
A friend recently brought this dessert to a dinner I attended. The almond-cookie crust, coconut, and zest of lemon form the perfect combination for a not-too-sweet dessert. The recipe can be made in bar form, or baked in mini-muffin cups for a portable treat.
Adapted from Nourishing Traditions
For the crust:
3/4 cup dehydrated almonds (I used this recipe and omitted the maple syrup)
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup arrowroot powder
1/4 cup maple sugar (you can substitute with sucanat)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the filling:
1 large egg
1/4 cup creme fraiche
1/2 cup maple syrup
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
1 1/2 cups unsweeteened coconut
Preheat oven to 350ºF and adjust rack to middle position. Place almonds in the food processor and process until finely ground. Add coconut oil, arrowroot, maple sugar and vanilla. Process until dough comes together and is moist. Press crust in an oiled 8 x 8-inch baking dish. Bake for 15 minutes. Lower oven heat to 325ºF.
Whisk egg, creme fraiche, maple syrup, zest and arrowroot in a medium bowl until smooth. Stir in coconut. Pour coconut mixture over crust and spread evenly. Bake for 25 minutes until edges are just golden brown (If you’re baking these in mini muffin cups, reduce the baking time to 15-20 minutes). Cool completely. Serve.
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