Cutting of the coconut meat is not, strictly speaking, a difficult step. But before you can get to the product you find in our bags of coconut chips, or the shredded coconut used to extract the coconut oil, there are several steps to prepare the mature nut.
Step 1: peel the nut
The coconut picked from the tree is surrounded by a thick layer of fiber. The first step consists of separating the shell from these fibers in order to obtain the “brown” coconut, which is found regularly in stores.
For this, there are different machines that are semi-automatic and can be more or less artisanal! The video below shows the most commonly used technique. The principle is simple: the nuts are placed between 2 rolls covered with pins, which turn in opposite directions. The pins enter the fibers and, by turning, pull the fibers out of the shell. At the end of the process, the shell of coconut is seen!
2nd step: open the shell without damaging the flesh
The shell of the coconut (or the core) is only a few millimeters thick, but is hard as wood, and covers the white flesh of the coconut. It must therefore be removed, without damaging the flesh it protects. Another machine comes into play here (to be discovered in the video below) which uses toothed wheels, that break and separate the shell from the flesh. Once the hull is removed, we have a sphere of coconut meat. However, it is also necessary to remove the fine brown skin, which covers the white meat of the coconut. To do this, we use a “peeler.”
3rd step: cutting the coconut into chips
This is probably the most simple step. The prepared and purely white coconut is cut into big pieces and then passed through a slicer like the one below. Its function is simple and resembles a household appliance for cutting carrots in rounds, or making shredded carrot! One must only change the blade to make shredded coconut.