As you know from my Friday post, I have been working with CFCA to help bring awareness to a wonderful organization that I am extremely passionate about. One of the things we are doing, that I am really excited about, is sharing recipes from the countries of our sponsored friends around the world. It's fascinating to see how our daily lives differ so much from these people yet somehow we are all trying to accomplish the same things. We are doing our best to take care of our families and finding ways to make ends meet. What is interesting though is how quickly we take for granted the things that people in third world countries have no access to. For instance, today I am sharing a bread recipe. If I didn't have an oven, I wouldn't bake bread. However, in Guatemala, a woman named Isabel bakes bread every day without an oven. She uses wood and fire, because she has to.
In honor of Isabel and all of the women in Guatemala who work hard to provide for their families, I decided to share a recipe for coconut bread that you would find here in the United States. If you think it looks difficult or time consuming, you need to watch the video of Isabel making her coconut bread. She makes it every day. It is humbling to watch and will make you truly appreciate the little things you are lucky to have!
The dough needs to be kneaded by hand. Imagine doing that every single day. The dough is set aside until it doubles in size. It's really hot in Guatemala so I'm sure the dough rises quickly there. It took about an hour and a half in my house.Once it doubles, it is divided into small pieces and set aside to double again. I actually set the tray of rolls in my microwave so the dough would rise. It's a little warmer there than on top of the counter. Once the dough rises a second time, the rolls are ready for the oven. They took about 20 minutes to bake. They were absolutely delicious, a little sweet with a hint of coconut flavor.
I appreciate the opportunities I have living in this country and feel fortunate to have access to the things that make life comfortable. I respect the hard work that people in less fortunate countries have to do in order to survive. Whatever you are doing today, appreciate exactly where you are. We have a lot to be grateful for!
- 1/2 cup unsweetened finely grated cocount
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 (0.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, more for kneading
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons butter or non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening, melted
- Put coconut, sugar, yeast and water into a small non-reactive bowl and stir briefly. Set aside until mixture is swollen and bubbly, about 15 minutes.
- Mix flour and salt together in a large bowl. Add yeast mixture, coconut milk and butter. Using your hands or a wooden spoon, stir until well combined.
- Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead, dusting with more flour as necessary, until soft and elastic, 5 to 6 minutes. Form dough into a ball, dust generously all over with flour and transfer to a clean large bowl. Cover bowl with a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm spot to let rise until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.
- Divide dough into 8 pieces and roll each into a ball. Arrange balls of dough on a large greased baking sheet, spacing them 3 to 4 inches apart. Set aside in a warm spot, uncovered, to let rise until doubled in size again, about 45 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake bread until deep golden brown and cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm or set aside to let cool to room temperature.