Recipe Building Blocks
For many people one of the challenges of Passover cooking is finding ingredients that are certified Kosher for Passover. While the number of products available with Passover certification keeps increasing, there are some ingredients that need to be made from scratch, even though an easier store bought version is available for year-round use. Some of these ingredients are more of a potkche (hassle) than others to make, but for a dessert that is sure to impress they are worth it.
2 cups dried unsweetened coconut
2 cups boiling water
2 teaspoons potato starch
Place the coconut in the blender and pour the boiling water over it. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Turn blender on to high speed and blend for 2 full minutes. Stop the blender, scrape down the sides and scrape the coconut out of the lid. Blend again for another minute.
Place a strainer over a medium bowl and line it with cheese cloth. Scrape the coconut mixture into the cheesecloth and press down hard with a spatula or spoon to extract the liquid. Gather the cheesecloth into a bundle and squeeze as hard as possible to get out all of the liquid. (If the coconut is too hot to handle at this point let it sit a few minutes before squeezing it). Measure the coconut milk in the bowl and add enough water to make 2 cups. The absolute most it should need is a ¼ cup. If there is less than 1 ¾ cups of coconut milk squeeze the coconut more to extract the remaining water.
Pour the coconut milk into a medium pan and add potato starch. Heat on the medium-low heat, stirring frequently until it comes to a boil. Boil for one minute while stirring constantly.
Place the ingredients in a heavy 4-quart an, stirring gently until the sugar in moistened. Bring to a boil. When mixture boils, brush down the sides of the pan above the upper surface of the syrup with a clean, moistened pastry brush, or cover the pot with a lid for two minutes to allow the condensation to dissolve any lingering crystals.
Uncover the pan, insert a candy thermometer and increase the heat to high. Do not stir after this point or the syrup will crystallize. Continue cooking until the syrup reaches 240. Remove from the heat and let the syrup cool for 15 minutes. Ladle it into clean jars and attach the lid.
This will keep at room temperature for two months. It will be very thick once it is cool, so microwave it on high power for two minutes before using so that it can be easily poured.
Combine 2/3 cup sugar with 1 teaspoon potato starch in a blender and blend at high speed until powdery. This can be scaled up to make a larger amount, just keep the ratio of sugar to potato starch constant.