Friday, July 15, 2011

Trinidad Coconut Drops...Diabetic/Sugar Free Version

Don't open yuh eye big so...coconut drops can be made sugar free and still remain tasty. Traditionally Trinidad coconut drops are little sweet dense mounds that are a cross between bread and cake. The smell of these little buns of tropical goodness baking send your senses straight  to the Caribbean with the scent of coconut, rum, and spices. I usually make coconut drops with regular sugar but since my mom has to watch her sugar intake I decided to make these sugar free. The main sweetener for this recipe could have easily been splenda but since my mom is skeptical about artificial sweeteners I decided to go the all natural route with agave nectar. In short agave nectar is a sweetener derived from the Mexican cactus like agave can learn more here.

  For my mom I decided to use part whole wheat flour and part all purpose flour to add to the nutritional value of the drops, but you can choose to make the recipe using all purpose flour alone. Another tip for baking drops is to soak your raisins so that they don't dry out while baking. I soaked my raisins in a mix of cherry brandy and Angostura Single Barrel rum but water can be used to soak raisins as well.

Since many people both old and young have dietary restrictions when it comes to sugar I decided this would be a great recipe to post so that my diabetics and pre-diabetics can still enjoy delicious homemade coconut drops. I will also experiment with other flours such as whole grain and rice to see if I can develop versions to accomodate other diets. Will Keep you all posted in the mean time Happy Baking!

Sugar Free Trinidad Coconut Drops
Makes 6

1/3 cup raisins, soaked in rum or water
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup agave nectar
1 large egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp cola essence, optional
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 cup grated coconut

- Soak raisin in small bowl at least 1hr before baking.
- Prepare sheet pan by greasing or lining with parchment paper. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- Combine flour(s), nutmeg, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt
- Melt butter and place in mixing bowl along with agave nectar. Mix on medium speed until well blended and emulsified.
- While butter and agave mix, combine egg, extracts, and lemon zest in small bowl.
- When agave and butter emulsify add in egg mixture and mix until combined.
- Add in coconut to mixture and combine.
-Add in flour mixture, mix until just combined.
- Add in raisin, leaving reserving the liquid to the side.
- Divide batter into 6 equal portions
- Shape into circular mounds

- Place in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes.
- Remove from oven and brush lightly with rum mixture raisins were soaking in. (Omit this step if you used water)
- Cool and enjoy

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