A Nigeria Cash Tree: Crack-Up The Coconut Craze!

The coconut is a wholesome most precious, sweet food crop, a versatile coconut palm used in various Nigerian recipes, food processing, beverages, pharmaceuticals industries, and cosmetic products; known in northern Nigeria as “kwakwa” called in Igbo “Aku Oyibo or Aki Bekee” and the Yoruba is “Agbon”, the coconut oil in Yoruba is “Epo or Ororo Agbon” with every part of the coconut bringing in income and amazing health benefits, its products are used from the kitchen to the bathrooms. The coconut palm tree wine is called “Ogu’rro” which is the same as “emu” of the palm kernel trees and Hausa called it “Giyar Kwakwa”. Nigeria is known for its coconut heritage, although the coconut is not indigenous to Nigeria agriculture; but Badagry Lagos Island has a cultural affinity with coconuts having Lagos as the highest coconuts producing state in Nigeria. Coconut is known to grow under diverse types of climate, so highly adaptable, and is found growing in most of the Nigeria states; coconut farming is a gold mine, blessed with cash trees that could help harness the development of local industries to aid in improving standards of living which offer economic, health, and environmental benefits amid the Nigerian cultural manifestation, customs, and cuisines. In most Nigerian communities the coconut is referred to as a life-giving nut, associated with religious and mysterious rites, especially in traditional rituals of transforming someone’s destiny. The devotees of the mermaid known as the “mami wota” regard the coconut as powerful with healing and spiritual powers; using it to help intercede on their behalf with the water goddess. Whilst others use the coconut called the vigil nut as a symbol of protection and security in households against intruders, the spirit world, and evil forces.

Cracking the core treasure of the coconut: Enjoy the following delicious recipes with this funny Nigeria Igbo Proverb; “whoever presents his own head to crack coconut would not be able to partake in the eating of it.”

The COCONUT WATER is different from coconut milk, coconut milk is prepared from the fleshy pulp of the matured coconut with the addition of water. While coconut water is the juice found in the center of young, green coconuts which form naturally in the fruit, and it is known as “koren kwakwa” in Hausa. Coconut water helps to prevent kidney stones, an excellent health benefit against diabetes, with its magnesium loads helping to increase insulin sensitivity and improve blood sugar control. May help reduce heart disease risk and also reduce blood pressure. Coconut water with its subtle sweetness nutty flavor, low in calories, and carb. is a rich source of nutrients such as electrolytes that aids in increasing body fluids; with essential nutrients such as potassium, sodium, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus, vitamin C, vitamin B, protein, fiber, and antioxidants. Coconut water helps boost brain health, aids in easing out depression and brain fatigue, soothing mental stress, helps improve memory also.

The COCONUT OIL has also been proven to help stave off dementia because of its effects on brain cells mostly in Alzheimer’s patients; helping their brain to function better; Coconut oil contains anti-inflammatory agents that help prevent Alzheimer’s and slow its progression. The organic virgin coconut oil contains antioxidants that may help curb inflammation; a harmful process that worsens heart disease; worthy of note is that, if coconut oil is being used for health remedy it is BEST to first seek advice and the supervision of a medical doctor. Coconut oil is neither a super-food nor a poison but must be consumed sparingly and periodically for its unique flavor; Coconut oil is of great health benefits if included in a regular diet especially diets consisting of more fish, fruits, nuts, and vegetables helps greatly to lower the risk of heart attack, strokes and fatal heart-related diseases. It is advisable to eat all food types in moderation in order to reap the most of the health benefits. The healthiest and longest life involves healthy wellbeing, such as eating home cooking and homemade natural oil like coconut oil. Grow organic food in household gardens, especially vegetables and fruits to avoid produce with pesticides, growth hormones, GMOs, and antibiotics. Drinking lots of clean water, bite and chew food thoroughly, and being active physically and mentally to reap major health benefits.

The COCONUT MILK is rich in Lauric Acid, which helps protects the body from infections diseases like viruses and bacteria. 
A recipe to boost brain health; is a mixture of coconut water from the young green coconut which is mostly 90% water known as “ruwan kwakwa” in Hausa, honey is “zuma”, dates are “dabino”, then blend and drink, and for added flavor and boosts add-in “kirfa” in Hausa is cinnamon. Coconuts are low-carb, gluten-free, nut-free, keto, and grain-free.

The Organic Virgin Coconut Oil:- The Virgin coconut oil is mostly made up of saturated fat which goes solid at room temperature; Coconut oil is a vegetable fatty oil, contains various lipids, acids, saturated fats, highly controversial debates on the healthiness of the coconut oil, but whatever the views might be for “GOOD” or “BAD”; facts reveal that coconut oil did not raise “BAD” cholesterol with its high saturated fats BUT it helps to increase the “GOOD” cholesterol. Coconut oil has a unique flavor, and it is best to consume it in small quantities; occasionally as an alternative to other vegetable oils that are rich in unsaturated fats, included in the diet along with organic vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean proteins. Coconut oil is neither a super-food nor a poison but becomes more of a super-food if combine with fresh organic produce. The coconut butter and oil are eco-friendly, tasty, and truly high-quality healing oil for healthy well-being.

A TOOTH REMEDY:- The coconut oil is an all-purpose homemade product, for foods, skin, hair, feet, useful health remedy and great for aching tooth canals that is 99% effective most especially if used for OIL-PULLING; by just the use of a mouthful of virgin coconut oil, to swish backward and forward in the mouth to ease pain, swellings, and heal the bad tooth. An excellent teeth whitener with the recipe as this; mix coconut oil with baking soda, toothpaste, salt, and use it as toothpaste to brush the teeth keeps away germs from the mouth.

The VIRGIN COCONUT OIL:- Virgin coconut oil is called in Hausa “mai’kwakwa” and is known as “Idi’agbon” in Yoruba. It is used for various recipes such as homemade body scrub; by mixing the coconut flakes with sugar, mint, and lime. keep in the bathroom for smoothening body care. Virgin coconut oil can also be used for sunburns, stretch marks, burns, and scars, also great for shaving to achieve smooth razor bump-free skin. Superb hair treatment for oiling the scalp for luscious frizz-free radiant hair growth. Homemade coconut oil is made from a process that helps keep most of its tropical taste and nutrients; it is in high demand especially organic virgin coconut oil; if well prepared, packaged, and labeled brings in a good income for the family.

Recipe Ingredients:-
Coconuts is “kwakwa” in Hausa.
Hammer and sharp knife.
Potatoes peeler.
Food processor or a blender.
Fine mesh, colander, or cheese bag.
Sieve, spoon for scooping.
A dish bowl, or glass bowl, with a cover.
A sterilized glass jar for storage.

Recipe Steps:-
The shelling of the coconut is made easy if placed in a hot oven for a few minutes, comes off the shell easily after cracking.
Drill a hole on the 3 eyes of the coconut then drain the liquid contents of the coconut and keep for later use.
Then crack the shell with the aid of a hammer, knife, or a heavy kitchen object and if using the shells for bowls use a knife to cut around a cycle in the middle; then carefully and patiently separate the white fleshy pulp from the husk.
Rinse thoroughly remove the brown layers with kitchen vegetable peelers; but if shells are shattered use for fuel or discard for other uses. Rinse again after removing the brown layers.
Wash peeled coconuts with clean water and put them into a powerful blender or strong food processor. Pour over the diced coconut, the coconut water reserved. Then to start by blending at “pulse” intervals to break up the coconut, then increase the speed to medium for a while and later increase to high speed; blend until thick smooth consistency, if water is not enough to add some more water.
Pour out into a large bowl, using gloved hands, mix in more water for the next step of mashing, squeezing, and rubbing around. Continue for several minutes to help get most of the coconut oil from the coconut flakes. After several processes of squeezing out the oil, the mixture will turn milky white. Sieve or strain using a colander, mesh, or cheese bag. Grab the bag and squeeze well to get most of the milk out from the chaff; keep the flakes for other recipes such as desiccated coconut flakes, or milled into coconut flour for cakes, bread, and biscuits. Strained twice into a bowl, cover well the coconut milk, and place in a cool dry place preferably in the refrigerator undisturbed for two days.

The first method of coconut oil is the cold-pressed virgin oil and is the best in nutrients; on the second day of keeping the coconut milk undisturbed, the creamy-white fats will form a thick white layer on the top, and at the bottom of the bowl is a cloudy liquid of the coconut milk, which can be used in cooking other recipes. Then scoop the top layer of the white coconut cream, into a separate bowl which can be used for ice cream, yogurt, sweet and creamy non-dairy recipes. Coconut fat is often referred to as coconut cream or cheese.

Allow to melt at room temperature or heat up until all liquid evaporates leaving only the coconut oil. Then filter and scoop and stored the coconut oil in a glass jar, bottles, or bowl. Seal it, label it with dates and recipe ingredients. Keep for use anytime it is needed.

The second method is known as hot-pressed which begins by either blending the coconut with lukewarm water; or boiling the coconut milk on low heat until all water is evaporated. Strain to remove brown fried particles, and store in an airtight sealed jar, labeled with names, ingredients, and dates.

Toasted Coconut Flakes is known as “Kwakumeti” in Hausa:-
A sweet and filling snack mostly prepared by housewives who sell to shops, hawking vendors, retail shops on street corners, others give their kids to hawk it around major parks; while others with more start-up capitals employ youths to help out in producing the “kwakumeti” which is then supplied in bulk to big stores and supermarkets, Hospitals, restaurants, the airports, and motor-parks.
A delicious snack love and enjoy by most Nigerians; making it one of the most popular street snacks in Nigeria. The Nigeria toasted coconut flakes are packaged and sold in refilled bottles, sealed jars, cute little packs, and sachets. A sweet treat consumed and enjoyed with other snacks like the roasted peanuts, others enjoyed it with soaked Garri or Fresh Roasted Corn.

Recipe Ingredients:-
Matured coconuts are known as manyan kwallo kwakwa in Hausa.
Icing sugar is Hausa sigari.
Coconut water is ruwan kwakwa and coconut oil is the mai’kwakwa.
Grater, knife.

Recipe Steps:-
Crack open the coconuts, and collect the coconut water. De-husk and grate in tiny flakes.
Spread out to air a little. Put a dry frying pan on low heat and pour into it the reserved coconut water, add the icing -sugar, stirring gently to dissolve, stir constantly to avoid it sticking to the pot, reduce the heat. Next is to add the grated coconut, stir it immediately to coat the sugar mixture on low heat. Stir continuously, then add in a little water and continue to stir until the color changes to a light golden brown, and as soon as it starts to come together remove from heat. Immediately before it cools down using an ice-cream scoop, scoop into balls and arrange on a large tray to cool and to air.

A recipe for coconut flakes used for other recipes is the same as above but instead of grating use a potato peeler to flake it into very thin, and light transparent flakes. Then collect the flakes and spread them out on a tray. Toast it in the oven lightly, check regularly to avoid burning. Also using the sun-drying method to dry it into crispy light flakes. Store in an airtight jar, or bowl. A sweet coconut flake is by adding icing sugar, coconut oil, and coconut water. Mix well and allow to coat thoroughly, then toast it as for the recipe above. Store and label appropriately.

Traditional Coconut Rice Is Known As Dafa’Dukar Shinkafar Kwakwa In Hausa:- In Nigeria almost all homes incorporate coconut in every recipe, a healthy lifestyle begins with a healthy eating habit which can only be possible with the consumption of wholesome and healthy foods, such as including coconut in a regular diet. The coconut rice is a delicious, spicy staple enjoyed by families.

Recipe Ingredients:-
Skinless Chicken is known as Kafa In Hausa.
Parboiled Rice in Hausa is tafasheshen Shinkafa.
Smoked fish in Hausa is Bandar kifi.
Grated coconut, coconut milk, water, and coconut oil is Nikeke ko gurzajjiyar kwakwa, mai, ruwa da madarar kwakwa.
Purple onions are albasa, carrots are karas, peas are koren wake.
Sweet pepper, red, green, yellow is tatasai ja, koren, da yelo.
Scotch bonnets Atarugu.
Curry, thyme, seasoning cubes, salt, and crayfish.

Recipe Steps:-
The first step begins with skinning the dressed chicken into a clean pot, cut into tiny pieces, season with salt, onions, cubes, spices, with a little water, cook until chicken is flaky soft, and tender. Remove from heat, pick out the chicken pieces and leave the chicken stock in the pot.
Put a separate pot on low heat, add coconut oil or any vegetable oil of choice. Add onion slices, and fry cooked chicken slightly just a little light golden color; then remove from oil and keep in a bowl.
Add diced, sliced, and chopped vegetables into the oil and stir-fry for a few minutes, add the chicken stock, coconut milk, and coconut water. Season well.
Add parboiled rice, followed by the grated coconut, and combine well with stock and vegetables. Carefully sprinkle the crayfish on top and arrange the lightly fried chicken atop the rice. Add more coconut milk if the liquid is not enough to soften the rice and finish off the cooking. Then cover and simmer on very low heat to avoid rice sticking to pot and burning. Cook until all liquid is evaporated and dried up without burning.
Serve garnish with any veggies of choice, with coconut lemon juice.

Coconut Gruel Is The Hausa Popular kunun kwakwa:-
Recipe Ingredients:
Coconut is the kwakwa.
Rice has not polished the local rice is best which is the Hausa shinkafar tuwo.
Milk is called madara in Hausa.
Sugar is the sigari.
Ginger is citta, Chili is borkono and cloves are kanampari.

Recipe Steps:
Wash rice thoroughly to remove most of the starch, soak in water for some hours to soften. Add ginger, cloves, and chili. Then blend into a pouring consistency just like custard or akamu. Add enough water to make the process of sieving it easier; Sieve or strain using a fine mesh or cheese bag. Cover and keep undisturbed to allow the thick mass to settle at the base of the bowl.
Crack the coconuts, scrape or peel the brown off the fleshy coconuts. Dice into tiny pieces, add the coconut water to it, and blend. Sieve the coconut milk into a clean pot, and put it on low heat to boil.
Meanwhile, scoop the mass of the blended rice and dilute with some water, pour into the boiling coconut milk, and mix in quickly to avoid lumps forming. As soon as it thickens to a smooth custard form, remove it from heat. Add milk and sweeten with any sweetener of choice. Serve immediately for breakfast or serve chilled as a sweet dessert.

Coconut Fura Da Nono:
A most refreshingly nutritious meal drink, a favorite of all, and love by those who taste it for the very first time. A cherished delight for every taste-bud, gone international in beautiful packages with no artificial additives, all the way natural homemade healthy complete super-food. A natural recipe prepared from fermented milk called nono in Hausa and millet flour balls known popularly as fura. A traditional meal of the Fulani of northern Nigeria traditionally served in beautifully decorated calabash bowls with its scoops.
There are two methods in making this sweet deliciousness, either using a bowl and mix with the hands manually or using a food processor such as a blender. Crack up a coconut, scrape or peel the brown off the coconuts, and cube it. Add cubed coconut into the blender with the coconut water and blend it all together. Mash the millet balls into tiny pieces and add to the grated coconut in the blender, add the yogurt nono or kindirmo, sweetener of choice, and iced water. Blend very well to combine. Serve in cute little bowls or calabashes. A super healthy deliciousness, with excellent loads of nutritional benefits.

Coconut Milk Is The Madara Kwakwa:- Coconut milk is a delicious alternative to animal milk, rice milk, almond milk, soy milk, or other plant-based milk. A sweet, hydrating, and refreshingly nourishing keto drink. A very simple recipe to prepare and so cheap; use for smoothies, ice-creams, yogurt, bread, cakes, and pastries. Adding organic vanilla pod, and cocoa powder give a unique and delightful flavor and taste.

Recipe Ingredients:-
Sugar (optional).
The flavor of Vanilla or cocoa powder.

Recipe Steps:-
Crack the coconuts, collect the water and keep. de-husk and remove the shells. Scrape the brown off the coconut pulps and dice it. Put the diced coconut into a blender, add to it a pinch of salt, sugar which is optional, or any sweetener of choice, add the coconut water, and add in iced-cold water and blend on high until thick and creamy smooth. Strain using a fine mesh or strainer, squeeze out the cheese bag to get most of the milk out. Serve in tall glasses with fruit slices of choices. Store in sealed refilled bottles in the refrigerator. Shake before use, if milk separates after storing.

Coconut Lemon Drink:-
The young fresh green coconut water is delicious, easy to drink just poke a straw into it and enjoy a delicious raw organic, fresh coconut water; great natural nourishment.
Coconut water is an awesome addition to any diet; an amazing sports drink and excellent for replacing lost energy in activities such as workouts, sweaty and strenuous games.
Recipe Ingredients:-
Lemons, ginger, salt, honey, lime, purified water, and coconut water.
Combine all the ingredients in a blender, and blend. Serve with iced cubes, or store in the refrigerator in refilled bottles.
An ideal refreshing drink, so rich in vitamins and minerals but low in sugar; excellent for the desert heat of northeast Nigeria, superb to replenish fluids in the hazy dry winter winds of northern Nigeria.

Sustainability in coconut agricultural production in Nigeria means more foreign exchange earnings, food sufficiency, and food security while for the individual farmers it means more money and improved livelihood. There is a need for the total overhaul of coconut plantations, their rejuvenation, planting of hybrid, and highly improved seeds that will yield more. The diversification of coconut in Nigeria is a necessity as an employment generation potentials and a source of livelihood for the coconut growing states where the coconut extracts are processed into food, fruit drinks, and toiletries, coconut oil, coconut water, coconut chips, and desiccated coconuts for exports and indigenous uses.  
The art of using coconuts shells for decoration in order to improve on the coconut shell market by creating beautiful and hand-crafted coconut shell bowls that are natural, eco-friendly bowls, cost-effective, and a great way to reduce waste for the coconuts; simply by recycling coconut shells into beautiful bowls for use as serving bowls or items for household decorations.
The technological process of utilizing coconuts shells for sustainable biofuel must be encouraged; the coconut shells aside from their use as decor items or bowls for eating can also turn to charcoal when used as fuel, the shells are more sustainable economically, and environmentally friendly to avoid anything that contributes to the climate change problems, coconut shells are among the untapped energy source from Nigeria’s agricultural residues and waste. Absolutely vital to look into the economic potential of coconut shells for future environmental sustainability, and eco-friendly clean energy that will help to generate both economic and industrial development for Nigeria, providing jobs for millions of unemployed youths in Nigeria.
What are you waiting for; Go coco-NUTS!