Trinidad Style Coconut Tart

A delectable pastry pocket filled with stewed shredded coconut

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart - A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. #Caribbean, #Trinidad

Baking is such an important part of Caribbean culture. Walking into a local bakery you're met with a colorful array of freshly baked bread, pastries, cakes, and cookies. And this is not just for commercial use, on Saturday, households are known to bake up their own batch of bread and cakes and pastries.

Coconut tarts use one of our very staple ingredients: the coconut. Unlike the coconut bake, the tart is on the sweeter side. It's a pastry with a bread type texture that we stuff with the meat of the coconut that has been stewed with sugar and some other spices. Oh so yummy!!

To say  that the coconut isn't an important part of our cooking I would be lying. Cooking and baking are not really complete without using some part of the coconut. Be it the milk of the coconut or the husk (some people call it the meat). The husk is most commonly used in making sweets like this coconut tart, coconut drops, or even coconut cakes. On the other hand, the milk is for more savory foods. I use it while making my pelau, sometimes when we're stewing chicken. 

My fondest memories of coconut tart is seeing my aunt, who had a bakery, making these. By the time she was done she would be covered in flour from head to toe. Rolling, and sealing and making these in batches.

Folding the tart is a pretty easy process. It's like any hand pie. I did the same process to make the aloo pies to be fried. Roll out, add filling, fold and bake.

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart - A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. #Caribbean, #Trinidad

Then we have to make it look pretty, so we give it a wash of a sugar bath. I know sometimes people like to do an egg wash, but I love seeing a glaze on a tart. Coconut tart must be shiny (or so I think).

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart - A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. #Caribbean, #Trinidad

The smell of this is amazing. OMG.

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart - A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. #Caribbean, #Trinidad

And as much I would love to tell you grab one of these as they come out of the oven, I really should warn you to wait a little. Hot flaked coconut is not your friend. I've learned that the hard way.

Give it a little time to cool down.

So that when you bite into that and get a nice big clump of seasoned coconut with a bunch of spices, you won't have to spit it out doing the "too hot to handle" dance.

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart - A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. #Caribbean, #Trinidad

Cause I would really hate for you to waste such a great snack.

I'm curious though, do you use dry coconut in any of your dishes?


yield: 16 tartsprint recipe

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart

A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.
prep time: 50 MINScook time: 30 MINStotal time: 80 mins

INGREDIENTS:

For Filling
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 cups shredded coconut
  • 1 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 bay leaf (optional)
For Flour Casing
  • 4 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 tbsp Crisco
  • 2 drops yellow coloring (optional)
For Glaze
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar

INSTRUCTIONS:

For Filling
  1. Combine coconut, nutmeg, cinnamon, sugar, ginger, bay leaf in a saucepan.
  2. Mix for about 15 minutes (till flavors are combined and coconut is tender)
  3. Set aside
For Casing
  1. Combine flour, sugar, yeast, Crisco ensuring that the Crisco is well incorporated into flour mixture.
  2. Add water and coloring and combine
  3. Make dough into a ball and leave to sit for 30 minutes.
  4. Separate dough into approximately 16 balls. (big enough to hold approximately 2 tablespoons of coconut)
  5. Cover with a damp towel (let sit for about 20 minutes)
Making Tarts
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Lightly grease a baking sheet
  3. Roll out dough balls into circles.
  4. Place approx 2 tbsp of coconut mixture on one-half of dough
  5. Dampen edges of circle with water.
  6. Fold over half of dough over coconut
  7. Seal edges with a fork
  8. Repeat till all dough is filled with coconut
  9. Place on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes
  10. Brush glaze on baked tarts
  11. Bake for another five minutes
  12. Set aside to cool (Be careful. Hot coconut can burn)
For Glaze
  1. Mix water with sugar
  2. Brush mixture on baked tarts (After first 20 minutes)
Created using The Recipes Generator

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart - A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. #Caribbean, #Trinidad
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