Beat the heat with coconut jelly

Picture by K.E.Ooi
Picture by K.E.Ooi

GEORGE TOWN, May 8 — Silky smooth, cool and sweet, coconut jelly made from coconut water has to be the perfect antidote for the recent hot and dry spell. Not only does coconut water slake your thirst but it also provides much needed hydration for the hot and humid days we are currently experiencing. Moreover it is high in nutrients especially in potassium.

Nowadays, some coconut stalls go a step further to offer a twist to the refreshing drink. Instead of merely drinking the coconut water straight from the fruit or in a tall glass with some ice, it is used to make jelly right within the drained coconut shell.

The best coconut jelly has to be the ones made from young coconut where the water is sweeter and the flesh is soft and smooth. In most cases, the smooth white coconut flesh are left inside the coconut shell while the water is used to make the jelly.

The making of the jelly is a simple enough process, similar to the making of any other flavour of jelly, where the coconut water is cooked with some agar-agar powder and sugar until a sticky syrupy substance is formed. The concoction is then poured back into the drained coconut shell. Finally, it is refrigerated so that the liquid solidifies into the soft, transparent jelly.

In Penang, there are quite a few coconut stalls that also sell coconut jelly and coconut milk shake, which is a twist to the simple coconut water. Most of them add only a minuscule amount of sugar in the making of the jelly so that it isn’t overly sweet and still retains the fresh crisp flavour of the coconut water. The coconut milk shake is a completely different drink where coconut water is blended with vanilla ice cream and condensed milk for a sweet, thick and frothy smoothie.

Coconut water, coconut jelly and coconut milk shake are available at these places in Penang:

Joe’z Coconut
201, Jalan Dato Keramat
GPS: 5.411932, 100.323202
Time: 8am — 7pm

This famous shop along the busy main road of Dato Keramat has been around for many years; mention coconut juice and this shop come to mind. It started out offering young coconut juice and pandan coconut juice before introducing coconut jelly and coconut shake sometime in the last decade.

CBLC Enterprise
Jalan Dato Keramat
GPS: 5.412250, 100.323580
Time: 8am — 7pm

Located just a few metres away and across the road from Joe’z Coconut, this corner shop offers the same items as Joe’z. There is a slight difference in texture in the coconut jelly but it is not as fragrant as the ones made using the water from the pandan coconut.

Anba Coconut Trading
Abu Siti Lane
GPS: 5.420458, 100.325287
Time: 8am — 7pm

This is another favoured haunt for coconut juice lovers where mounds of coconuts fills the shophouse and overflowing baskets on the floor. They also recently started offering their own version of coconut jelly alongside the usual young coconut and pandan coconut juice.

Syneeth Coconut
Burma Road
GPS: 5.416947, 100.329808
Time: 10am — 6pm

This is a relatively new stall compared to the other three and it is located very near the overhead pedestrian bridge linking to Komtar. Similarly, they offer the usual young coconut juice and coconut jelly.

Road side stall
Jalan Kulim, Bukit Mertajam
GPS: 5.352755,100.473854
Time: 9am — 6pm

This stall is next to the famed Hj Mohd Token Mee Kuah Ketam so you can have your mee kuah ketam and quench your thirst with the coconut water served in the coconut or in large stainless steel mugs. They also have the coconut jelly for a nice cool treat.

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