Inspiration comes to me from many places, like the Internet, cookbooks and mainly my own brains, but this particular recipe I got from one of my favorite cooking magazines. They had this brilliant article in it, where they showcased well-known, notorious duos and classic combos, such as:
Perfect Matches: Bananas and Chocolate — Bacon and Eggs
Opposites Attract: Surf and Turf — Sweet and Salty…
But then, the article carried on to a more intriguing segment, which they entitled: Who would’ve thought?! That particular section included rarely heard of combos such as Mushrooms and Vanilla, which I’m thinking I really have to try, and this: Coconut and Rutabaga.
Really? I mean, really? Coconut and Rutabaga? Ha! The piece states that the coconut plays a big role in toning down the bitterness of the rutabaga, which is what makes them such a great team. And then they included a recipe for a Rustic Coconut Rutabaga Mash.
Of course, I had to try it! However, their version only included a few tablespoons of coconut oil as the coconut component. I figured that, at that rate, I was already pairing coconut with everything and anything, since I use it for cooking pretty much all the time. So I decided to take things a little further and add actual fresh coconut meat to the mash. As well, I chose to cook my rutabaga in fresh coconut water. And well, you know me, I had to change a few more this-and-thats…
Good calls, all, me thinks… good calls!
And me also thinks that you really oughta try this combo for yourselves!
For starters, peel and cut the rutabaga into smallish cubes, about half an inch, and throw them into a large skillet along with the coconut water and water.
Now about the coconut water. If you are using fresh coconut, use whatever water you get from your coconut and add more or less “regular” water so you get a total of 1 cup of liquid.
And if you don’t feel comfortable using fresh coconut because you have no idea how to handle the “animal”, check out the cool instructional video that I made a few months ago to show you how I’ve been quickly, easily and painlessly cracking open my coconuts for years now. I’m telling you, once you have mastered this technique, you’ll be eating fresh coconut on a regular basis! That stuff is sooooo good!
So anyway, let’s get back to the recipe, shall we? Set your skillet over high heat, bring to the boil and then continue cooking on high, uncovered, until all the liquid has evaporated, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the coconut oil, onion and salt to the pan and cook some more, until the rutabaga is really soft and tender and takes a nice golden coloration, which again, should take about 10 minutes.
Now throw in the broccoli florets and continue cooking for another 2 minutes or so, until the broccoli becomes tender and turns a beautiful vibrant green. .
Toss in the fresh coconut shavings, black pepper and nutmeg and then mash coarsely with a potato masher. Alternatively, you could also throw this in your food processor and give the whole thing a few quick spins on pulse.
Oh, and if you didn’t have fresh coconut shavings on hand, you could very well use unsweetened coconut flakes instead.
Serve this immediately, while it’s still piping hot, topped with more coconut shavings and coconut oil, if desired.
So… how was it, you wonder? Can coconut and rutabaga be considered a good match? Should they ever think of teaming up, becoming good friends, or even life partners, perhaps?
Definitely, yes! Although seemingly completely awkward, this combination TOTALLY works. In fact, this rustic mash will definitely be added to my weekly “meal” prep, where I usually steam a few pounds of Brussels sprouts, bake a couple of sweet potatoes and make a large batch of coleslaw or some other kind of sturdy salad to last me throughout the week.
I swear, this one just earned itself a spot on one of my fridge’s shelves, which it will occupy VERY regularly.
Oh, and once that round of Whole30 is behind me (and I finally get to reintroduce nuts) I might even add a few handfuls of chopped toasted hazelnuts to it. Oh, the dream…
Try it, I’m absolutely, positively certain that you will love it!
- Put the rutabaga, coconut water and water into a large skillet. Set over high heat and bring to the boil, then continue cooking uncovered until all the liquid has evaporated, about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Add the coconut oil, onion and salt to the pan and cook until the rutabaga is really soft and takes a nice golden coloration, again, about 10 minutes.
- Throw in broccoli florets and continue cooking for about 2 minutes, until the broccoli becomes tender.
- Toss in coconut shavings, black pepper and nutmeg and then mash coarsely with a potato masher. Serve immediately, topped with more coconut shavings and coconut oil, if desired.
Not sure how to handle a fresh coconut? Check out my instructional video on How to Crack Open a Coconut Quickly, Easily and Painlessly