Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

The Fork: Cuckoo for Coconuts |

We woke in terror today (or the day we wrote this, anyway) as the sun scorched our face through the tragically still-open blinds. Even worse, we sometimes get to the fork-writing part of the week and think, “Oh, God, we’ve got nothing!” And so, as we stood in the kitchen looking out upon the leftover snow from whatever hellish storm blew through overnight, we munched on our Philippine coconut yogurt from Liberté, wondering how yogurt plays in with liberation and slowly realizing that we could probably slap together a pretty decent piece on coconuts…SO GET READY FOR A TOTALLY FACTUAL AND IN NO WAY JOKEY HISTORY/FACT LESSON ON THE NOBLE COCONUT!

Some have referred to the coconut as the Swiss Army knife of fruits in that it’s got the fruit meat, which is dense in calories, water you can drink and a fibrous outside that can be made into ropes and such. You can also burn the husks like some kind of new age charcoal. Nice, right?

But where’d those suckers come from originally and how were they disseminated globally? Well, most believe they originated in Southeast Asia among the Austronesians, but given their ubiquitousness among sea-faring folk who happened through, they’ve grown and changed and popped up pretty much everywhere.

Still, it’s likely that the coconut we know and love today was likely cultivated in two different places thanks to evolving trade routes and boats and stuff: the Pacific basin someplace and the Indian Ocean basin.

While you can grow pretty much anything anywhere, today most coconuts come from a small handful of places like Indonesia, the Philippines, India, Brazil and Sri Lanka. We’re down with those Philippines ones because that’s what’s in our yogurt and it’s a damn fine yogurt (said in Kyle MacLachlan voice).

Anyway, it takes like five or six years for coconut trees to fruit, and despite the word “nut” popping up right in the name, they’re actually drupes, others of which include plums and cherries and olives. It also takes about a year for a coconut to get to that place where you want it to be…emotionally.

And even though you’ll only find commercially viable coconut production in a few small places, there remain something like 150 species, maybe a few more, and they’re found in 80 countries across this globe of ours.

Perhaps most interesting, however, is the lifespan of the coconut—because those little fools can survive up to 100 years in the freaking wild. We’re surprised there’s not some rich-person market for aged coconuts, but then again, maybe there is? We almost broke the bank getting the millionaire yogurt from the store, but there’s some jerk in a suit cracking up an 80-year-old coconut and screaming at his butler to bring the diamond-encrusted fruit meat scraper. Haha! Why are we like this?

Coconut Records (aka Jason “Rushmore” Schwarzman) put out a pretty OK record a bajillion years ago. Set adrift with the timeless pleasures of jamz that got to exist because he’s in the Coppola family!


-That local Asian market, which is wisely called Santa Fe Asian Market, has opened, so those of you who’ve been asking us what the deal is can rest easy. Hopefully this fills the hole left by Talin World Market, which is the Chomp food hall now.

-You’ll find that Arroyo Vino’s annual Spring Wine Sale is in full effect through Saturday, March 26! That gives you a couple days to get you some sick-ass wine, assuming you’re reading this on the Thursday The Fork drops.

-Speaking of tasty bevvies, Hidden Mountain Brewing Co. (formerly Blue Corn) is slated to release a new beer this Sunday, March 27. That’s right, the Broken Spoke Pils is a pils(ner) created to help ring in bike weather. Score!

-Our BEST FRIENDS OF ALL TIME at Edible New Mexico have opened up nominations for their annual Local Hero Awards. In a nutshell (boom, nuts—food yuks), these awards are meant for the folks in food who really make a difference in their communities and indeed for the field itself. You can nom your faves right here, friend-os (friends-os?)

Our train of thought was something about how Nilsson was a GENIUS, but the lime/coconut song is played and not even close to his best—so you get this jam-a-lam instead. It slaps, if you didn’t know.

More Tidbits

-Because of a years-old joke on the show Rick & Morty, which is beloved by the kind of people who think they’re the only ones smart enough to understand it, the world now finds itself in a position to acquire McDonald’s Szechuan Sauce every now and again, and that time is now, apparently. Why does McDonald’s have items it only serves sometimes? Because existence is a prison.

-We’re heading into…we dunno, one of those weeks of Lent, and for folks looking to fish it up Lenten style, we found a pretty kickass recipe for British-style fish and/or chips. Let’s face it, buds, Britain has the best fried fish and fries forever. Sorry, we don’t make the rules, we just taste the things.

-Speaking of recipes, here’s one for a simple-to-make coconut curry. As we understand it, this should take about 30 minutes. Not bad! We think these ties into that coconut stuff we were saying before quite nicely. QUITE NICELY!

-We weren’t sure whether to put this in the local section since it features a local business, but we ultimately decided to place it in the national section because the overall piece features all kinds of American info. Anyway, Thrillist-dot-com hunted down the 32 best donut shops in America, and Santa Fe’s Whoo’s Donuts made the cut. Having eaten that blue corn lavender donut, we concur.

A Totally Scientific Breakdown of The Fork’s Correspondence

Thanks for the kind words on last week’s first stab at a video profile, gang! Sadly, there was no food coverage in the print paper this week as local artist and beloved community member Shontez “Taz” Morris died on March 17, and it was only right to run a tribute.

Number of Letters Received


*No notes on that Chef Spotlight vid—y’all loved it!

Most Helpful Tip of the Week (a barely edited letter from a reader)

“I don’t want cherries and pineapples together in one cake.”


Really Helpful Tip(s)

Nothing helpful, but when y’all write us nice stuff, we like it.

*Becky? BECKY?!?!? You’re the best.


the fork

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