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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Cruising & Liveaboard Forum > Provisioning
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  #1  
Old 01-09-2007
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Question coconuts

I have been told that the coconut goes thru several stages of use as a food, from water to an almost icecream consistancy. Does anyone know these stages, how to recognize and buy them and how to harvest the water, milk, meat ect?
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Old 01-09-2007
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This from wiki....
Botanically, a coconut is a simple dry fruit known as a fibrous drupe (a true nut). The husk (mesocarp) is composed of fibres called coir and there is an inner "stone" (the endocarp). This hard endocarp (the outside of the coconut as sold in the shops of non-tropical countries) has three germination pores that are clearly visible on the outside surface once the husk is removed. It is through one of these that the radicle emerges when the embryo germinates. Adhering to the inside wall of the endocarp is the testa, with a thick albuminous endosperm (the coconut "meat"), the white and fleshy edible part of the seed. The endosperm surrounds a hollow interior space, filled with air and often a liquid referred to as coconut water, not to be confused with coconut milk. Coconut milk is made by grating the endocarp and mixing it with (warm) water. This produces a thick, white liquid called coconut milk that is used in much Asian cooking, for example, in curries. Coconut water from the unripe coconut, on the other hand, is drunk fresh as a refreshing drink.
When viewed on end, the endocarp and germination pores gives to the fruit the appearance of a coco (also Côca), a Portuguese word for a scary witch from the Portuguese folklore, that used to be represented as a carved vegetable lantern, hence the name of the fruit [1]. The specific name nucifera is Latin for nut bearing.
When the coconut is still green, the endosperm inside is thin and tender, a favourite snack. But the main reason to pick the nut at that stage is to drink its water; a big nut contains up to one litre of refreshing drink. When the nut has ripened and the outer husk has turned brown, a couple of months later, it will fall from the palm of its own accord. At that time the endosperm has thickened and hardened, while the coconut water has become somewhat bitter.

Coconut flower. Location: Taliparamba, Kannur, Kerala, India.


To open a coconut, remove the outer husk (if not purchased already removed) and pierce two of the three eyes of the fruit (one for the juice to come out of, one to enable air to go in); drain the juice from the fruit. Since coconuts have a naturally-forming fracture point, they can be opened by taking a heavy knife, such as a meat cleaver, and striking the coconut with the flat edge of the knife. Or you can use a flat-bladed screwdriver and a hammer (which is easier, and may be safer than using a cleaver). After inserting the screwdriver slightly, twist it to crack the shell. The coconut should then be turned, and this process repeated until there is a contiguous crack in the shell around the entire fruit. Afterwards, the fruit can be separated at this fracture point.

More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coconut
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Old 01-10-2007
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I know Moitessier wrote about coocnuts in A Sea Vagabond's World (see: A Sea Vagabond's World ).

Sam
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Old 07-09-2007
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Has anyone heard anything about what happens when coconut water goes rancid inside a coconut?

My Opa (grandfather) was in the Dutch navy during the Dutch "colonization" of Indonesia (this is a thread on coconuts, not politics, so spare me your barbs). I vaguely remember him telling me something about Dutch sailors drinking rancid coconut water because it got them intoxicated - and was mildly hallucinogenic. Is there any truth to this (would love to know for sure because I've been spreading this factoid/fallacy for the last 20 years)?...
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Old 07-12-2007
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I doubt something with such properties would be allowed to be sold in grocery stores. Besides if it were the case wed' all have been drinking coconuts in high school.
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Old 07-12-2007
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Just a cautionary word of warning to the woould-be coconut drinker, but they can sure clean you out quickly. I remember a Canadian couple we got to be friends with popped one of those open in Jamaica. They had 1 (one) a piece.

THey spent the next two days in their on their own seperate crapper.

Better get used to it in small portions or plan on losing weight faster than Jenny Craig can do.

- CD
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Old 07-12-2007
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I'm sorry, but coconuts are not designed for sailing. They are hard to open, take up too much space, they provide very little food for the area that take up and they roll around. You can't have food that rolls.
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Old 07-12-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knotaloud
I'm sorry, but coconuts are not designed for sailing. They are hard to open, take up too much space, they provide very little food for the area that take up and they roll around. You can't have food that rolls.
True, food that walks or crawls is much better, although harder to catch
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Old 07-12-2007
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THere are an abudance of islands you land on with coconut trees. They are absolutely all over the place. Those things fall from the sky with a considerable punch... and if they hit you in the head, you gona be hurting, in the hospital, or dead. I always love the signs that say: Watch out for Falling Coconuts. Yeah, right. Sorry Boys, by the time you know it is going to hit you, you better get a bag of ice and some aspirin.

That being aside, I often see the unwary couple enjoying a nice fresh coconut on the beach... watching the water come in... the waves lapping at the shore... ahh, such is love. I just hope the boat has two heads or the true test of a gentleman will come to fruition.

And I always wondered why the repopulation of coconut trees is sposored by the International Divorce Lawyers Association...

- CD
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Old 07-12-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoOkay
I doubt something with such properties would be allowed to be sold in grocery stores. Besides if it were the case wed' all have been drinking coconuts in high school.
Well, given that everything you need to make speed - no, I don't know this from personal experience - can be bought in a grocery store or pharmacy, I'm not sure the presence of coconuts in my local Safeway is enough to dispel the myth.

Maybe I'll cling to it a while longer in the absence of evidence to the contrary.
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