Coconut Rice

Kate and I have just returned from a trip to the Caribbean . I wanted to make a Caribbean inspired dinner on my day off this past Sunday. I have not made this rice for a couple of years and I love this recipe. The recipe is a little time consuming and working with a fresh coconut can be a little difficult. I assure you that it is well worth the effort . With just one fresh coconut, rice, a little sugar and salt you will be amazed at the flavor of this rice. ENJOY!
Coconut Rice
1 Fresh coconut ( shake to make sure full of liquid.)
4 cups boiling water
3 1/2 cups of water ( including coconut water )
2 cups of Basamati Rice
1 T. Sugar

Take a fresh coconut and open the “eyes” with a clean phillip’s head screwdriver or something similar. Drain the coconut water in a bowl and reserve. Break the coconut, remove the meat and peel off the brown skin with a pairing knife. Cut the white meat into small pieces and divide into two portions. Put one portion at a time in a blender with one cup of boiling water and blend for 2-3 minutes. Be sure to cover the top of the blender with a towel to avoid a hot liquid burn. Pour through a fine strainer and press out all the liquid into a pan. Blend again the squeezed coconut with another cup of boiling water and press again. Discard the pulp. Repeat above procedure with the second portion. Set this coconut milk to boil until it almost reduced and the oil starts to form. Reduce the heat to medium and stir the bottom of the pan continuously with a wooden spoon until the mixture just starts to turn blond. Do not let it get dark. Rinse the rice under cold water until water runs clear and add to coconut mixture. Stir mixture over medium heat 2-3 minutes and then add the liquid (coconut water and water to make 3 1/2 cups). Increase heat to high and when water comes to boil add sugar and salt. Decrease heat to very low, cover pan and simmer gently until liquid is incorporated. This will take 12-15 minutes. Keep an eye on this. Remove from heat and fluff rice with a fork. Serve rice within 1/2 hour. Serve with anything you can imagine. The photo that accompanies this recipe is grilled red snapper with a ginger citrus sauce and simple sautéed spinach.