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Nata de coco

Nata de coco

Overview

Nata de coco is a chewy, translucent, jelly-like food
Food
Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body. It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals...

 product produced by the fermentation
Fermentation (food)
Fermentation in food processing typically is the conversion of carbohydrates to alcohols and carbon dioxide or organic acids using yeasts, bacteria, or a combination thereof, under anaerobic conditions. Fermentation in simple terms is the chemical conversion of sugars into ethanol...

 of coconut water
Coconut water
Coconut water is the clear liquid inside young coconuts . As the fruit matures, the coconut water is gradually replaced by the coconut meat and air. A very young coconut has very little meat; the meat that it has is very tender, almost a gel...

, which gels through the production of microbial cellulose
Microbial cellulose
Microbial cellulose is a form of cellulose that is produced by bacteria. It is widely used in the traditional Filipino dessert Nata de coco. Microbial cellulose was first confirmed as cellulose in 1886.- Production :...

 by Acetobacter xylinus
Acetobacter
Acetobacter is a genus of acetic acid bacteria characterized by the ability to convert ethanol to acetic acid in the presence of oxygen. There are several species within this genus, and there are other bacteria capable of forming acetic acid under various conditions; but all of the Acetobacter are...

. Nata de coco is most commonly sweetened as a candy or dessert, and can accompany many things including pickle
Pickling
Pickling, also known as brining or corning is the process of preserving food by anaerobic fermentation in brine to produce lactic acid, or marinating and storing it in an acid solution, usually vinegar . The resulting food is called a pickle. This procedure gives the food a salty or sour taste...

s, drinks, ice cream
Ice cream
Ice cream is a frozen dessert usually made from dairy products, such as milk and cream, and often combined with fruits or other ingredients and flavours. Most varieties contain sugar, although some are made with other sweeteners...

, puddings and fruit mixes. The product originates from the Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

.

Nata de coco comes from Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

 "cream of coconut".
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Encyclopedia

Nata de coco is a chewy, translucent, jelly-like food
Food
Food is any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body. It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals...

 product produced by the fermentation
Fermentation (food)
Fermentation in food processing typically is the conversion of carbohydrates to alcohols and carbon dioxide or organic acids using yeasts, bacteria, or a combination thereof, under anaerobic conditions. Fermentation in simple terms is the chemical conversion of sugars into ethanol...

 of coconut water
Coconut water
Coconut water is the clear liquid inside young coconuts . As the fruit matures, the coconut water is gradually replaced by the coconut meat and air. A very young coconut has very little meat; the meat that it has is very tender, almost a gel...

, which gels through the production of microbial cellulose
Microbial cellulose
Microbial cellulose is a form of cellulose that is produced by bacteria. It is widely used in the traditional Filipino dessert Nata de coco. Microbial cellulose was first confirmed as cellulose in 1886.- Production :...

 by Acetobacter xylinus
Acetobacter
Acetobacter is a genus of acetic acid bacteria characterized by the ability to convert ethanol to acetic acid in the presence of oxygen. There are several species within this genus, and there are other bacteria capable of forming acetic acid under various conditions; but all of the Acetobacter are...

. Nata de coco is most commonly sweetened as a candy or dessert, and can accompany many things including pickle
Pickling
Pickling, also known as brining or corning is the process of preserving food by anaerobic fermentation in brine to produce lactic acid, or marinating and storing it in an acid solution, usually vinegar . The resulting food is called a pickle. This procedure gives the food a salty or sour taste...

s, drinks, ice cream
Ice cream
Ice cream is a frozen dessert usually made from dairy products, such as milk and cream, and often combined with fruits or other ingredients and flavours. Most varieties contain sugar, although some are made with other sweeteners...

, puddings and fruit mixes. The product originates from the Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

.

Etymology


Nata de coco comes from Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

 "cream of coconut". Cream in this sense means the fat from the coconut milk. The Spanish name is a result of Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

's colonization of the Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

.

Nutrition


Nata de coco is highly regarded for its high dietary fibre, and its low fat and cholesterol content.

Strips of nata de coco are used in mass-produced bubble tea
Bubble tea
Bubble tea is the name for pearl milk tea and other similar tea and juice beverages that originated in tea shops in Taichung, Taiwan during the 1980s. Drink recipes may vary, but most bubble teas contain a tea base mixed with fruit and/or milk...

 drinks as a healthier alternative to tapioca
Tapioca
Tapioca is a starch extracted Manihot esculenta. This species, native to the Amazon, Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, and most of the West Indies, is now cultivated worldwide and has many names, including cassava, manioc, aipim,...

.

Production


The primarily coconut water dessert is produced through a series of steps from:
  1. Extraction of coconut water
  2. Fermentation of the coconut water with bacterial cultures
  3. Separating and cutting the produced mat of nata de coco
  4. Cleaning and washing the acetic acid
    Acetic acid
    Acetic acid is an organic compound with the chemical formula CH3CO2H . It is a colourless liquid that when undiluted is also called glacial acetic acid. Acetic acid is the main component of vinegar , and has a distinctive sour taste and pungent smell...

     out of the nata de coco
  5. Cutting to packaging

Commercial nata de coco is made by small farms in the Philippines and Indonesia, especially in Jogjakarta province.

External links