Sunday, January 27, 2013

Antiguan Coconut Tarts

Some childhood memories are stronger than others and our family's trip to Antigua when I was in 3rd or 4th grade is etched so firmly in my psyche it remains so familiar I feel it could be yesterday.

It was  a trip offered to us by family friends we had a beach side house with a Jamaican woman named Doreen help that would cook and clean for us. We toured buildings in a town near Johnson's Point where there were large open window bays and poor Sam, jumping through them, tripped and dislocated his elbow.

 Doreen was particularly helpful when I fell sick from drinking the water - who knew? - and took days to recover, but the kind and helpful Doreen was so good at caring for me. When I was back up and at it we combed the beaches and body surfed. In the evenings, people would approach us to sell their wares but no matter how hard I begged Dad and Hi-Ho would not buy me the hallowed out giant sea stars because in fact I did find one of my own. I found it the afternoon I refused to swim any longer, after being pile-driven head first into the sand by one unnoticed poorly planned wave. That day the ocean got the better of me and ever since I don't trust the surf any longer.

 Oh Antigua - you were a magical trip. The smells, and visions, and most of all tastes stand out to me. On the front porch one evening, playing my first ever game of cribbage, Doreen made this for us and it was an amazing culinary treats. They are heaven in a bite. They take a bit of time and effort, but are the best treat ever.

*** the picture is not from ones I have made, but is my minds eye's best representation of it. The treats in the picture those darker, and are in fact Jamaican coconut drops that include ginger.***

I whole fresh coconut
1 cup sugar


  1. Grate coconut. 
  2. Dry coconut in roasting pan on top of the stove, stirring so not to burn. 
  3. Cook sugar and coconut - stirring constantly - until the mixture can be shaped. 
  4. Shape and cool and let dry for about 24 hours so the tarts will harden.


Pam said...

Hi, aren't these called sugar cakes? Antiguan coconut tarts are a baked pastry with a coconut filling.

Anonymous said...

Yes these are sugar cakes