Cocada Amarela Recipe: Spiced Coconut Porridge from Angola

This spiced coconut porridge is inspired by Cocada Amarela, a popular pudding recipe from Angola. Shredded coconut is combined with egg yolks, sugar, cinnamon and cloves to make a tasty gluten-free breakfast or snack.

Welcome to Angola, the 5th nation in our around-the-world cooking challenge. Located in Southwestern Africa, the country boasts a wide variety of unique landscapes. This includes expansive coastline, towering rockfaces, lush national parks, sub-saharan desert and Africa’s second-largest waterfall. It’s also home to many renmnants of the Portguese colonial era.

Unfortunately, due to stringent visa policies and ongoing conflict, Angola is closed off to most visitors. We may not be able to explore the country anytime soon, but at least we can still explore Angola’s cuisine!

An Overview of Angolan Cuisine

One of the things I have very become aware of during this around-the-world cooking challenge is lasting influence of colonization on many African nations. The Portuguese colonized Angola for over 400 years in Angola. This has had very evident impact on the country’s gastronomy. 

You can particularly see the Portguese influence through the prevalence of meat and palm oil in Angolan cuisine. Other common ingredients you’ll find in Angola include beans, rice, tomatoes and garlic. Most dishes features meat or fish and some kind of sauce. The most popular dish is funge, which is a porridge-like side dish made of cassava flour.

Popular Dishes in Angola

  • Kizaca Boiled cassava leaves mixed with ground peanuts, stewed to develop a thick, nutty sauce
  • Funge– Plain mashed cassava, commonly served on the side of dishes
  • Feijão de óleo de palma– Stewed beans in a sauce made from palm oil
  • Doce de ginguba– Candy similar to peanut brittle
  • Cocada amarela- A pudding made from grated coconut, egg yolks, sugar and cinnamon

Making Angolan Cocada Amarela

The number of vegetarian-friendly Angolan recipes out there is pretty minimal. Thankfully, I stumbled upon an Angolan dessert called Cocada Amarela and it sounded right up my alley. After all, I am an absolute coconut fiend.

This simple coconut pudding requires just a few basic ingredients, which makes it an easy-to-whip up dessert. However, it’s porridge-like consistency made me breakfast option if you want to make it more like a porridge. 

What kind of coconut should you use to make Cocada Amarela?

The first time I made cocada amarela I wanted to do so in the authentic way. So I bought a whole mature coconut, hacked it open, scooped out the coconut meat and shredded it in a food processor. The fresh coconut really did make a difference in adding a lot of texture and coconutty taste to the dish.

However, buying pre-shredded coconut will save you a lot of time (and a few battle wounds, my fingers are still recovering from the cuts).

Cocada Amarela | Angolan Cuisine

Ingredients for Cocada Amarela

This recipe requires so few ingredients, most of which you probably already have!

  • Coconut– To make the most authentic cocada amarela, shred your own coconut. However, if you want to save time and achieve a smoother texture to your porridge, you can use dessicated coconut.
  • Coconut sugar- Typically, cocada amarela is made by using a large amount of white sugar. As I wanted to make this dish more breakfast-friendly, I used coconut sugar and halved the amount of sweetner. Feel free to adjust to your taste.
  • Eggs– You’ll need 3 egg yolks (separated from the egg white) for this recipe.
  • Spices– Cocada Amarela is ightly-flavoured with a whole cinnamon stick and a clove.

How to make Cocada Amarela

1. In a saucepan, combine coconut sugar, water, cloves and cinnamon stick and bring to boil. Constantly stir until sugar is dissolved, then boil for a few more minutes. Reduce heat, remove cloves and cinnamon stick and add shredded coconut. Simmer for 10 minutes, constantly stirring.

Cocada Amarela | Angolan Cuisine

2. Meanwhile, beat egg yolks till thickened. Pour out a small amount of syrup from the saucepan into eggs and mix, then pour egg mixture back into the saucepan.

Cocada Amarela | Angolan Cuisine

3. Simmer for another 10 minutes, until coconut porridge has thickened. Serve up warm in bowls, sprinkling with cinnamon and topping with fresh fruit.

Serving Suggestions for Cocada Amarela

Cocada Amarela is traditionally served in Angola either warm or cold with a sprinkle of cinnamon. I’d also highly recommend topping with some fresh fruit.

For more delicious breakfast dishes:

Cocada Amarela (Spiced Coconut Porridge)

Cocada Amarela (Spiced Coconut Porridge)

Yield: 2
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This spiced coconut porridge makes a great gluten-free alternative to oats. Inspired by the popular pudding in Angola, Cocada Amarela, this porridge is made by combining shredded coconut, egg yolks, coconut sugar and spices.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • 2 whole cloves
  • Cinnamon stick
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded or dessicated coconut
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 tsp cinnamon, ground

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan, combine water, coconut sugar, cloves and cinnamon stick and bring to boil. Constantly stir until sugar is dissolved, then boil for a few more minutes.
  2. Reduce heat, remove cloves and cinnamon stick and add shredded coconut. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring regularly.
  3. Meanwhile, beat egg yolks until thickened. Pour out a small amount of syrup from the saucepan into eggs and mix, then pour egg mixture back into the saucepan.
  4. Simmer for another 10 minutes, until coconut porridge has thickened. Serve up warm in bowls, sprinkling with cinnamon and topping with fresh fruit.

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Nicola Easterby Bio Image

HEY THERE, I'M NICOLA!

I am on a mission to discover the BEST destinations & dishes from around the world. In fact, I’ve visited 54 countries and cooked 196 cuisines in this very pursuit. Whether it’s hopping on a plane or into the kitchen, come join the adventure!

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