Trinidad Style Coconut Tart

May 3, 2016
A delectable pastry pocket filled with stewed shredded coconut

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart

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.

You may think this is for commercial use. But nope. On Saturdays, households are known to bake up their own batch of bread and cakes and pastries.

Coconut tarts use one of our staple Caribbean ingredients: the coconut.

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.

We use from the the milk of the coconut to the husk (some people call it the meat).

Trinidad Coconut Tart

The husk is most commonly used in making sweets like this coconut tart, coconut drops, gizzadas, or even coconut cakes.

On the other hand, we use the milk is for more savory foods. I use it while making my pelau, sometimes when we're stewing chicken and even with fish.

Unlike coconut bake, 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!!

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.

Coconut Tart

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.

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.

Coconut Tart

The smell of this is amazing. OMG.

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.

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?

Check out these other Caribbean Treats with coconut:

Trinidad Style Coconut Tart

Yield: Approximately 16 tarts (can vary depending on size made)
prep time: 50 Mcook time: 30 Mtotal time: 80 M
A common Trinidad and Tobago baked pastry stuffed with blended coconut "stewed" with additional spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.


For Filling
  • 1 cup sugar (use less if you prefer it not too sweet)
  • 1 large coconut, grated
  • 1 teaspoon ginger powder or ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 bay leaf 
For Flour Casing
  • 1 pound flour
  • 1/4 brown cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast
  • 1 cup water (approximately. Can be less used)
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoons crisco
  • 2 drops yellow coloring (optional)
For Glaze
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar


How to cook Trinidad Style Coconut Tart

For Glaze
  1. Mix water with sugar
  2. Brush mixture on baked tarts (After first 20 minutes)
For Filling
  1. In a pan, on medium heat combine coconut, nutmeg, cinnamon, sugar, ginger, and bay leaf.
  2. Mix for about 15 minutes (till flavors are combined and coconut is tender)
  3. Set aside
For Casing
  1. Add flour, sugar and yeast, crisco to a bowl and combine ensuring that crisco is well incorporated into mixture.
  2. Add water, in sections, to flour mixture (and coloring if using) until a smooth texture is achieved. 
  3. Make dough into a ball, cover with a damp towel and leave to sit for 30 minutes.
  4. Separate dough into small balls. (big enough to hold approximately 2 tablespoons of coconut)
  5. Cover with a damp towel (let sit for 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 tablespoons of coconut mixture on one-half of dough
  5. Dampen edges of dough 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)
Coconut Tart, Coconut Turnover, Trinidad Coconut Tart
Snack, Desserts, Caribbean
Created using The Recipes Generator

Pin for Later:
Coconut Tart Trinidad Style

Thanks so much for stopping by and reading my posts. It is much appreciated. Please, if you can like, share, yum and/or pin this, especially if you enjoyed it.
Renz HomeMadeZagat
Renz HomeMadeZagat

Hi guys, I’m Renz. I am the chief cook and bottle washer here at HomeMadeZagat. I am here sharing Caribbean recipes that I grew up eating and new ones I’ve fallen in love with over the years. I just want to showcase the amazing diversity of Caribbean food and that everyone can recreate these dishes.