Lately I’ve been a bit addicted to coconuts.
I’ve always loved coconuts. Coconut water is the one refreshing, non-water drink that I could sip on every day. At one time, it was actually the only reason I would ever really want to buy a fresh coconut. After buying a few too many bad coconuts, I got out of the habit of buying them fresh anymore. It was just too easy to make things like coconut butter and coconut milk using store-bought dried, shredded, unsweetened coconut. When people started to ask me about making coconut milk from fresh coconuts, though, I decided to give it another shot.
I started out by getting smarter about choosing fresh coconuts, carefully inspecting each coconut before putting it into my shopping cart. Ever since, I’ve ended up only choosing fresh coconuts with sweet coconut water and bright white flesh. Not ending up with sour coconut water or off-tasting coconut meat has kept me wanting to buy more and more coconuts, and make more recipes and crafts with them. If you’re curious about how to choose a coconut and how to open it, I’ve written a whole post about it. I thought it was an important first step on the quest for making the perfect, seasoned coconut chips like these smoked paprika coconut chips.
Smoked paprika coconut chips are one of my favorite snacks. They are smoky, salty, crunchy, and can be spicy if you use a hot, smoked paprika. Not only are they great for snacking, but you can also sprinkle them on salads. Smoked paprika is very commonly used here in Spain, and it’s the main ingredient of the popular Spanish sausage, chorizo. Paprika here in Spain tends to vary by the region in which it is made. The regular paprikas, coming from the Murcia region, are sun-dried and then ground into a fine powder. “Pimentón de la Vera,” on the other hand, is a type of paprika that is made by smoking the peppers while drying them before grinding them into the final product. Either variety can be found in both “sweet” and “spicy” varieties.
Smoked paprika has a lovely flavor that allows you to make a snack with complex flavors using only a few ingredients. There’s no need to make things complicated, and all you really need is some coconut chips, smoked paprika, and salt. Of course, you can always mix it up and make this recipe your own by tweaking it to suit your taste. Chorizo itself is made with smoked paprika, salt, and garlic, so I’m sure that adding a touch of garlic powder would probably give you a sort of chorizo-flavored coconut chip.
Of course, you can easily make seasoned coconut chips without ever having to open a fresh coconut. By buying store bought dried coconut chips, you can save yourself a few steps and quickly make them within minutes. I have to say, though, that I find homemade chips more satisfying because they tend to be thicker and, thus, crispier. I mean the whole reason you want to make something like coconut chips in the first place is to have something crispy to crunch on, right? That said, even I occasionally turn to the store-bought ones in a pinch.
Despite sounding difficult, making your own coconut chips is quite easy, and all you need to get the job done is a vegetable peeler. If you’d like to see detailed instructions for how to make coconut chips, you can read my post about it on my blog.
If, on the other hand, you already have some coconut chips on hand, let’s go ahead and season them!
Smoked Paprika Coconut Chips
- Mix together the water, paprika, and salt, until you have formed a paste.
- Place the coconut chips in a container with a lid along with the paprika paste.
- Cover the coconut chips with a lid and shake them until they are all completely coated with the seasoning mixture.
- Spread the seasoned coconut chips over a baking tray or a dehydrator tray. (You can see in the photo that I like making all sorts of seasoned coconut chips, some of which will be showing up on my own blog very soon!)
5. Use your dehydrator, or bake the chips on the lowest heat of your oven (using a convection setting if you have one), until they are fully dry and crispy.
6. Serve and enjoy!