I love coconut and wanted a good way to enjoy the coconut as a sweet snack. I don't care for packaged coconut so we came up with this. I've tried this with several types of coconuts and found the brown coconuts work best. —ladywild
Cut the coconut meat into 1/4 inch squares. The more uniform the better.
Combine the water and sugar into a saucepan and bring to a low boil.
Add fresh coconut. Boil for 1 hour at a very low boil. Stir occasionally. The coconut should be transparent.
Preheat the oven to 275F. Prepare a large cookie sheet by lining it with parchment paper.
Stir in extract if using. Use a slotted spoon to remove the coconut from the syrup and spread onto the prepared cookie sheet. Make sure the coconut is a single layer and has some space between the pieces. Save the syrup in the refrigerator (works great as a substitute for simple syrup or on pancakes).
Bake the coconut until lightly golden brown. Stir every 20 minutes. Depending on the moisture of the individual coconut this could take between 30 minutes to 2 hours.