Monday, April 28, 2014

I am finally back!! With Coconut Custard!!

      It is hard for me to believe I was away for so long!!! I am back with many stories to share as well as things that I love!!! And love to share!!! 

 For my first post back, I present to you a recipe that I created, out of my LOVE and passion for Custard, but it includes my other ultimate favorite, COCONUT!!  Thank You, Trader Joe's for carrying so many wonderful foods!

(PS… for those of you who don't have a Trader Joe's nearby, you can order it online through ebay or substitute it with what you have locally!!)  
    Since I have not eaten wheat, dairy or white sugar for many moons now, due to allergies, stomach aches and just low/ no energy, I have had to find other ways to satiate that beast in my belly ( or is it in my HEAD??) !!! HUNGER!!!  I LOVE FOOD…. I REEEEAAALLY LOVE FOOD!!! And to take away all the fun desserts and oh, my favorite, TOAST with butter and peanut butter and jelly and all and anything that goes on toast… that one just about killed me ( well, my Spirit!!) to have to let that go!!  So I have to be REALLY creative about whipping up comfort foods for me to feel comfy !  
   Coconut sugar has a low glycemic index, and I can tell it does.  I feel no weird sugar surge like I do with white sugar or even honey!!! It allows me the luxury of having a sweet treat without the sugar hangover! 
   So here is my Happy Recipe for Tropical Yummyliciousness… made with good things that I can indulge!!! Enjoy!!! 

                                    Coconut Milk Custard

5 organic eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    2 cups TJ’s Coconut Milk Unsweetened ( in a green box)
    1/4 cup TJ’s Coconut Sugar ( mild sweetness)
    Ground  nutmeg

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  Custard needs to be baked in oven safe containers. There has to be a baking pan larger than the container that holds the custard.
Start with a baking pan ( I use a  9 1/2" square Corningware pan)  large enough to hold the oven safe dessert cups  ( or  1 large oven safe pan. I use a rectangular pyrex pan  8 3/4" x 7" that I got at Costco. It came in a set with assorted sized pyrex containers and lids for storage). 
Pour water in the larger pan ( fill only to about 1" below the top because it could overflow), to measure out how much water you will need. Take that water and pour it into a saucepan.   Bring that saucepan of water to a simmer on the stove, then put on low heat to keep warm.
In another saucepan, combine the coconut milk and coconut sugar. Bring to a simmer. Coconut sugar is brown, so it makes the custard a golden tan coffee-like color, not your typical buttery yellow custard!  Remove the milk and coconut sugar from heat. 
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and vanilla until yolks are very smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the warm coconut milk and coconut sugar to the eggs, whisk together until well combined.
Pour egg mixture so it evenly settles in each dessert cup( not sure how many you will need here), OR in the singular custard pyrex pan. Sprinkle with nutmeg. 
Open the oven door.  Place the larger baking dish on the oven shelf ( pulled out about 6"). Place dessert cups in the larger baking dish so the dessert cups don’t touch one another. Or place the singular custard pan in the middle of the larger baking dish. 
 Pour hot water from the warm saucepan into the baking dish so that it comes almost up to the level of the custard on the outside of each individual dish. This water is to prevent the custard from burning. Make sure you don't pour the water into your custard mixture!!!  This step is very important.  Slide the pan/ shelf slowly and carefully into the oven so not to make the water overflow.
   Bake until custard is set around the edges, about 40+ minutes.   Check by poking a knife into the custard. If it comes out clean, it is cooked. If not, bake a little longer. Check again as needed. 
  When finished baking, I turn off the oven, and open the door to let the heat out. I let the custard ( and water) cool off while still sitting in the oven ( so not to burn myself with the hot water while moving the custard pan out!).  When cool enough,( about an hour later) pull the custard pan up out of the water and place on a cooling rack. 
Allow custard to further set by refridgerating for at least 2 hours. Or serve right away, warm.  Either way, Heaven….
  Mahalo to Zanna for the Gorgeous orange hibiscus( I used it to hide the BIG bite I took right after I pulled the custard out of the oven.. hey, someone had to TEST it!!! ), and to Jodi for the Beautiful cymbidium orchids from that glorious day dancing hula overlooking the ocean!!  We danced to dolphins, white poofy clouds, warm sunshine, gentle breezes and island views.  And as soon as we stopped dancing, the wild winds blew out the area where we were and created huge white caps on the water… 
Blessed Hula Girls were we!!!!  On Earth Day!!