Coconut Candy Pops

Funke Koleosho's Coconut Candy Pops

Eating coconut candy, as we used to call it back then, was one of my very first tastes of sweets, in my childhood.

Back then, coconut candy was sold on street corners and they were made from very basic ingredients; coconuts (which are plentiful in Nigeria) and sugar... I used to look forward to my father bringing home coconuts, because to me, there was something exciting about cracking the coconuts open and collecting the water inside. Furthermore, I used to look forward to grating the coconut meat and generally being part of the process of making coconut candy.

Making coconut candy is a pretty straightforward process, grate the coconut meat and boil with some sugar until it becomes caramelised and sticky! Though it appears a simple enough process, it could be hazardous due to the high temperature cooking involved, which makes the sugar extremely hot and may cause burns if care is not apply caution if you would be involving your kids when trying out this recipe.

Coconut candies appear to be disappearing! Not many people make them any more these day, rarely are they served at parties or such..... this is a little disheartening for me, especially since I personally feel they are by far a better option for sweets than the myriads of sweet options found in supermarkets today.

Fact: coconuts are really healthy to eat, but they may seem less palatable for everyday eating, so making sweets or nibbles out of them is quite a welcome idea for me.

Coconut Candy Pops
Served with some melted chocolate
Traditional coconut candy is made with white sugar, but due to the health concerns surrounding the consumption of sugar, I have moved away from using white sugar and progressed into using other alternatives such as palm sugar if I can lay my hands on some, and honey or brown sugar. Also I tend to add some coconut oil to make the candies moreish and chewy instead of the rough, grainy texture that is otherwise formed.

To make eating coconut candies more appealing and fun for children and adults alike, I created coconut candy pops. Excellent to serve at parties or served to accompany desserts. Check it out...

What you need
  • 1 large coconut (shell and retain the coconut water)
  • 100g of brown or palm sugar (add more or less depending on how sweet you want the candy)
  • 4-5 tablespoons of honey or maple syrup
  • 2 cups of warm water
  • 2-3 table spoons of coconut oil

What to do
  1. Using a cheese grater, finely grate the coconut meat. Before grating, scrape off the thin brown layer at the back of the coconut meat.
  2. Then transfer the grated coconut into a pan and add the water. Also add the sugar and stir. Place the pan on a moderate heat stove and allow to cook. 
  3. Add the honey and stir in. Continue to cook till the water evaporates and the sugar starts to caramelise. 
  4. Turn heat down, the add the oil and stir. The longer this is left to cook the darker the candy turns. It also darkens if the sugar starts to burn. 
  5. While still warm scoop small portions and mould into balls. 
  6. Place a lollipop stick into each ball and leave to cool. For a more exciting taste, serve with some melted chocolate.

Coconut Candy Pops served with some melted Chocolate

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