How to open a coconut, throw it out, and burn it
Today I stayed at home due to the weather conditions. If you’re in the Midwest, you probably know what I’m talking about: sleet, ice, snow, blizzard warnings, state emergencies being declared, National Guard being called, power outages being feared. It’s safe to say we’ve worked ourselves into a panic. It has been sleeting all day in St. Louis and there is a sheet of ice covering everything.
With a little time on my hands, I decided to open a coconut.
There are a million different ways to open one. I decided to go the simple route and take the back end of a knife (the non-blade end) and whack it in an imaginary line around the middle, turning the coconut.
I got lucky and one of my hits made the shell come off.
There was some coconut water in the center, but I think that stuff is vile so I didn’t bother to save it. Then, using a sharp paring knife, I cut the meat into sections and took them out little by little. Soon, I had a real mess on my hands.
The brown bits on the coconut meat above still needed to be removed and cleaned so I went about that. It was during this time when I realized there was something off about the coconut. I finished the process anyway.
Then I googled, “How do you know if a coconut is bad?” and the answer was “Taste it.”
So I did. And it was not good.
At this point I wanted lunch. With coconut in it. I had my belly set on something like this (Thai Coconut Butternut Squash Soup).
Thank heavens for coconut in the can.
Also, God Bless Trader Joes for being the only place where I can find canned butternut squash. I love the taste of roasted vegetables as much as anyone, but when I’m just going to throw it all in a soup, canned is so much more convenient.
I started making the soup by adding diced onion, ginger and garlic to a dutch oven with oil in it.
Then I added red curry paste – I had this on hand thanks to the Real Simple cookthrough I did last fall. I bought a lot of spices in that period and it makes me happy when I can use the more uncommon ones again!
This soup was done in no time at all. For garnish, I toasted some shredded coconut (yes I also have some already in a bag. I’m crazy). I completely burned it to a crisp the first time.
Mark doesn’t know I’m cooking until the smoke alarms go off.
The soup was good. I added a lot more curry paste than the recipe called for, but it was still subtle.
Next time, I think I would reduce the broth – perhaps nix it entirely – and increase the milk. I like my soup a little bit creamier.
And a salad on the side.
This morning I did my first training run for my 2011 race season. I have signed up for the Go! St. Louis Half Marathon in April, and the Lincoln Half Marathon in May. I also have my sights set on a triathlon in June. I just need to get more confident about my swimming.
Anyway – that was a tangent – my run was great. I did four 400 meter repeats at 7:05 pace, followed with some easier running for a total of 5.5 miles. I’m following the FIRST plan once again because I’ve had so much success with it in the past, and because I have triathlons on the brain.
Tomorrow I’m going to explain how to run faster.
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