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Ever Heard of Coconut Apples?

Apples don’t grow in San Pedro, but have you heard of coconut apples? Those grow abundantly in San Pedro, and they are delicious. They are called “manzana de coco” so translated literally, it is coconut apple.

Everybody ate them in San Pedro 25 years ago, especially children. Here is how you grow coconut apples. When a coconut falls to the ground, it is already mature and partly green and brown. This coconut has the potentials of growing into a new plant. Shortly, in the presence of moisture, air and sunlight, this nut will break a small shoot with miniature leaves. Soon it will break roots which will feed water to the developing plant.

However, before the roots shoot, the plant uses the coconut water inside the nut. It is at this early stage that a white spongy material grows inside the nut to provide nutrients to the plant before the roots sprout. This white spongy material is the coconut apple. To enjoy a juicy sweet apple you need to cut open the nut at the right stage just before the roots are too long or the apple will be dry and tough and will no longer be sweet.

The coconut milk or water is delicious. The soft white meat is even more delicious. The coconut apple is super nice; at least that is what we thought because we did not eat those as often.

Now you must know that cracking a nut to eat the apple means one coconut plant destroyed at an early stage. So though I want to invite you to enjoy a coconut apple while in San Pedro, I hope nobody starts selling them at the fruit and vegetable stalls. Here’s what we did to enjoy coconut apples and you can do that too. We placed about 20 of them half buried in the sand where laundry water was thrown or any spot in the yard that is always moist and soon all nuts would produce a shoot and roots, so we could enjoy delicious coconut apples 25 years ago.

– by Angel Nuñez, Columnist

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