The Trials of Making Coconut Butter

This really works—with a number of qualifications.

There are so many instructions on how to make your own coconut butter that you either close your eyes and pick one or you read them all and make up your own instructions. Or worse, you pick the wrong one and go back to the drawing board. First mistake: not noticing or knowing that you should not buy reduced-fat coconut. The first set of instructions I read didn’t tell me about that, but I didn’t notice it on the package, anyway, until it never turned into anything but coconut dust.

The second mistake is thinking your appliance can handle the process. Maybe it can, but maybe not as well as a few specific appliances. It seems that most everyone who makes the butter uses something called a Vitamix, some kind of a superhero blender. A few people use a food processor, but aren’t specific about the brand or power level. I have a Cuisinart 11 cup food processor that is not new, but I can’t say how old it is, either.

So, on my second try, I bought both shredded and flaked organic coconut, both dried. I don’t know of any options for unsweetened coconut that is not dried. It took way longer than the 10 minutes most people brag about, especially with having to stop it every two minutes or less to scrape down the sides. I have read about people tilting their food processors with a stack of books, but I’m not sure how my little motor would feel about that. I also made it in stages, so I could let the processor cool down. Luckily, I had other kitchen tasks to do while waiting. I didn’t think it was going to work before the machine burned up, but eventually it did turn to a liquidy paste that was pourable. Only today did I read at the pin above that you could strain that liquid of the remaining bits of coconut and that you could add a little coconut oil at the beginning to hasten the process, both good ideas.

Mine is pretty much hard and a little dry, but still tasty enough that I want to chip away and eat it all. I added a pinch of kosher salt and a tablespoon of vanilla bean paste to mine. Will I make it again? Right now, I’m leaning toward yes, because I’d like to try it in some cookies and some Asian sauces (without the vanilla). Almost sounds like I’m thinking of making a variety of such butters. Maybe I need a fancier machine.




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