My first attempt at Coconut Ice turned out very nicely, and was gobbled up pretty quickly, but I felt that it could be improved on, and I put a second attempt on my Definite To-Do list.
My plans to give sweets for Christmas made it a good time to tick Coconut Ice (II) off that list, and I was very happy with the result and will stick to this version in future. This Ice is firmer, slightly less sweet, and creamier (all milk, no water)
The basics are the same as the first recipe, but the ratios of sugar, liquid and coconut are different and that – in my opinion – is what made the difference. This recipe is based on one from the Huletts Sugar website, and is a definite winner. (There are no method photos here, as everything actually looks the same as in the first coconut ice recipe on this blog.)
I used a 24 x 20 cm tin, and got 64 squares of about 1.5cm height. A smaller tin will obviously give a “taller” ice where pieces can be cut smaller.
900 g (4 ½ cups) sugar
300 ml (1 ¼ cups) milk
300 g (3 ¾ cups) fine desiccated coconut (I really prefer the fine for this, rather than using medium, which is very noticeable on the tooth)
2-3 drops of Pink Food Colouring
(I used cups rather than grams for all the measuring; it was easy and worked well)
3l pot with lid
20 x 24cm baking tin
- Spray the baking tin well (bottom and sides) with non-stick spray.
- Place the sugar and milk into the pot. Heat on medium heat (number 3), stirring gently with a wooden spoon until the sugar has dissolved.
- Bring to a rapid boil, cover with the lid and boil for 3 minutes. (This is different to other recipes I’ve seen, but I did it. The lid wobbled crazily and the mixture tended to “spit” but it wasn’t a big issue, and the 3 minutes went by quickly enough.)
- Take the lid off and cook till the thermometer reads about 118C (245F) – this should take about 5 minutes. (The original recipe says soft-ball stage, which is 112 – 116C, but I have found that I frequently prefer the results when I heat mine just a little higher, so I cooked this till the lower end of firm-ball stage (118 – 120C)).
- Remove from the heat and add the coconut. Working quickly, stir to combine.
- Still working quickly, pour half the mixture into the prepared tin, and smoothe to make it even. (The recipe suggests standing the pot with the remaining mixture in hot water while working with the first half, to prevent setting in the pot. I found I didn’t need to do this, as the pot I use retains heat very well.)
- Add 2-3 drops of pink food colouring to the remaining mixture and stir through. Quickly pour the pink mixture over the white mixture in the tin. Smoothe this layer too, for evenness.
- Leave to cool. When the mixture is half set, cut it into squares using a sharp non-serrated knife sprayed with cooking spray (or oiled). Leave to set completely.
- Store in an airtight container.