Coconut has been the staple food of people in many parts of Asia and Pacific Islands. The dehydrated shredded flesh of coconut known as desiccated coconut is often used as a substitute to grated coconut in food preparations such as curries, cakes, sweets and chutneys.
Confectionery and bakery units are the main consumers of desiccated coconut. Desiccated Coconut Powder is obtained by drying ground or shredded coconut kernel after the removal of brown testa.
It finds extensive use in confectioneries, puddings and many other food preparations as a substitute to raw grated coconut.
How to Make Dessicated Coconut:
The fresh matured coconuts are dehusked and deshelled manually using hand tools. The deshelled coconut kernels in the form of round balls are pared using scrapers to remove the testa.
The pared kernel balls are then cut open to drain off the water and then washed thoroughly in fresh water to remove the invert sugars from the inner surface of the kernel. The kernel is then ground into a fine mass using hammer or pin mills.
The ground mass is blanched with live steam for about 20 minutes to bring down the microbiological counts. The blanched mass is then dried in hot air drier at a temperature of 80-90oC for about 10 hours so as to bring down the moisture content to below 3 per cent.
The hot air drier is provided with a drying chamber consisting of a series of trays, which hold the feed. Hot air is blown into this chamber from an external source through blowers.
The dried mass is tested for moisture, free fatty acid and microbiological counts. The product is packed in polythene pouches.
Source: Coconut Processing Technology – coconutboard.nic.in