Guest Product Review: Taste Nirvana Real Coconut Water  »

When it comes to food miles, I’ve met some staunch locavore vegans in my day—we’re talking people who would rather risk prosecution sneaking into their neighbors’ yards to forage than buy non-local produce at a store that shipped it overseas. Remarkably, no matter how hardcore, I’ve noticed a surprising trend among those who identify as locavore vegans and raw foodists—all bets are off when it comes to coconuts!

That’s right: coconut oil, young Thai coconuts, and the ever-popular coconut water all seem to find their way into our shopping carts and hearts. Why? Well, honestly, I don’t know, other than it just tastes so damn delicious.

Usually, I mostly enjoy coconut in the form of coconut oil, but recently I’ve been getting into coconut water. The coconut water market is full of different competitors each vying for sipping rights. There’s a wide range in taste, containing device (bottle tetra pack?can? what to choose!) and mouth-feel. Some come with pulp, aloe, flavorings and other add-ins. I hadn’t really thought much about the different options, essentially getting whatever my hand grabbed first while quenching a craving. That is, until now. I have found a champion among coconut waters!

Taste Nirvana Real Coconut Water comes in pulp, aloe and plain varieties, and tastes unlike any other coconut water I’ve ever tried. A full-bodied liquid, each bottle or can (they come in both kinds of containers) delivers a shockingly rich, caramel flavor without anything added. I have no idea how they do it! I am never drinking any other kind of coconut water again, at least for a while.

Coconut water isn’t cheap, but if you’re going to indulge, I highly recommend the aloe flavor. Aloe has great health properties, including aiding in digestion, blood health, and cholesterol regulation, and has plenty of minerals, vitamins and enzymes. Plus, it tastes great with the coconut water! Ease your taste buds and your conscience by picking up a bottle or two on your way back from the farmers’ market.

This is Vegansaurus raw correspondent Sarah E. Brown’s latest post! Read more by Sarah on Vegansaurus, and visit her personal blog, Queer Vegan Food.


Earth Balance Organic Coconut Spread: Put it on or in EVERYTHING  »

Earth Balance Organic Coconut Spread. Oh, hell yes. Use it as sexual lube (commonly known as, “lube”), massage oil, in cupcakes, on toast, on a spoon, for high-temperature frying, or for high-temperature sexual relations. This shit does it all! There’s a reason this won product of the year at Vegnews, and your holiday baking just got a whole bunch more delicious. Plus, it’s all organic, so it doesn’t have any of that bad, shady palm oil in it (warning: shitty PDF). Seriously, if you love orangutans (and who doesn’t! They’re basically the muppet version of Jay Z and Bruce Vilanch’s love child), then only buy the organic Earth Balance DO IT. And since the organic regular Earth Balance is hella whipped, it’s not as good for baking, but now that shit doesn’t matter because this coconut spread is perfect for all your baking needs! Also, use it to get gum out of hair and to shine your silver! DO IT.

To further convince you of its glorious truth: Here’s a PDF from Earth Balance with tons of recipes, and coupons! Whole Foods also has a coupon — I wonder if you can combine to actually make money on this deal?? Learn the art of the pon, people. 


Trade your down for coconuts!  »

[The Insular Jacket from Nau—it’s filled with Cocona!]

I saw this on Ecouterre and it’s pretty awesome. This jacket is insulated with Cocona, an insulation made from discarded coconut husks!:


n 1 a: Trademarked name for a lightweight, breathable fiber derived from coconut-husk waste discarded by the food-service industry. b: Reduced to charcoal, combined with recycled polyester, and spun to maximize its surface area for warmth retention and moisture wicking. c: Said to resist odors better than traditional polyester fill. 2: Used in Nau’s insular jacket, a two-layer, sealed-seam shell with a helmet-compatible hood that the Portland clothier describes as “made for the mountain.”

Totally rad. Down is the worst. Geese are plucked live on some farms because it yields more down (if you kill them first, you only get one batch of feathers). And as the video linked above shows, it’s virtually impossible to be sure the down you are buying doesn’t come from live-plucking. So how about an environmentally friendly, cruelty-free alternative! Huzzah!


I’ve never heard of fried owl  »

The science world was in a tizzy last week as a new study was published about the veined octopus, a.k.a. the coconut octopus. Turns out these guys will collect coconut shells and use them as little shelters. OMG SO CUTE. This would make the octopus the first known instance of an invertebrate animal to use tools!

I happen to love octopuses because they are one of the smartest animals on earth! They can unscrew a jar, solve puzzles and they can even get depressed—I find depression in animals very endearing. I don’t know why. But I once saw a show about this poor octopus who was stuck in a stupid aquarium and got totally depressed—surprise! But some local kids set out to cheer him up and made him lego puzzles with treats inside and he loved them!

Now we find out they use tools. So cool. Here’s a pretty great video from the Museum Victoria in Australia:

All this got me thinking about the famous Jeremy Bentham quote about animals: “The question is not, Can they reason? nor, Can they talk? but, Can they suffer?” Even though he asked that in 1789, it is very relevant today. It seems that we vegans continue to make arguments along these lines—at least I know I do. But I can’t help but hope that if people realize how smart octopuses are, maybe they won’t want to eat them so much! I know, it’s probably naive, but look at the owl! The “wise old owl.” Maybe if we thought owls were dumb, they’d be dishing out owl burgers at McGrossy’s. But we think they’re smart, so we let them get old. Sigh. I can hope.

Image credit: dModer101 on Flickr.


Coco Loco!  »

It works like this: $2.50 buys you the coconut of your choice. He hacks off the top with a cleaver, puts a straw in it, then you drink the water. Then you bring it back to him, he hacks the whole thing open and puts a spoon in it, and you eat the jelly-like meat (cause they’re young coconuts, obviously). Then you feel fat and happy. The proprietor is very sweet and it seems like business is slow, so GO NOW, YOU LAZY BALL OF LARD. I dunno.

It’s located at 2770 Mission St. at 24th Street.

Hat tip to all the internet buzz and what not. No clue what the hours are so I hope it’s open when you go Open from 9 am to 7 pm every day! Otherwise, SUCKS TO BE YOU but you can make due with the other resources of our fine neighborhood.

Thank you, Joel! For the photos & info!

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