Cocoanut ice (with copha)


  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 cups caster sugar
  • 30g copha
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond essence
  • 3/4 cups desiccated coconut
  • drop raspberry syrup or pink food colouring


This is one of two ‘cocoanut’ ices or, as we’d now say, coconut ices, in the Meroogal ledger of heirloom recipes. It’s a true test of culinary alchemy, but is worth the effort if you like to make things from scratch. Most modern coconut ice recipes use sweetened condensed milk, but here you’ll note that it was once a home-made product!


In a deep saucepan over low heat, warm the milk, sugar, copha, essence and a pinch of salt. Stir gently until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil and cook for 5 minutes without stirring. Remove from heat, add the coconut and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
Pour into two shallow bowls, adding the syrup or food colouring to one bowl. While the mixture is still warm, beat each batch with a metal spoon for a few minutes or until the mixture becomes smooth and thickens. Transfer one batch onto silicon paper and shape into a neat square or rectangle.
Carefully spoon the second batch on top and shape to match. Allow to rest for 30–40 minutes or until almost firm, then slice into neat squares. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.

This recipe appeared in the post The 'cocoanut' ice challenge on November 20, 2014.

Have you tried this recipe?

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