Sunday, June 13, 2010

July 13 - Rio

I had a "down" day today and a chance to catch up with alot of things. Being Sunday, the road along the beach from Leblon to Ipanema to Copacabana Beach is closed to cars. It is FULL of activity - bikers, roller bladers, walkers, joggers, bikers, kids, street vendors. On Sunday, all of the small shops are closed. Grocery, drugstores, restaurants and the mall are open but later in the day.

The activity at the street restaurants are hussling as friends gather for late lunches , at corner markets for coffee and at beach site "tents" for drinks. I did get to the beach for a coconut water. They sell for about $1.50/coconut. They cut an opening in the top of the coconut, stick in a straw and off you go!

Coconut water is the clear liquid inside young green coconuts. As the fruit matures, the coconut water gradually is replaced by the coconut meat and air. A very young coconut has very little meat, and the meat is very tender, almost a gel. Coconut water has long been a popular drink in the tropics, especially in Southeast Asia, the Pacific Islands, such as Hawaii, and the Caribbean, where it is available fresh, canned or bottled. It is naturally fat-free and low in food energy (16.7 calories or 70 kilojoules per 100 grams).

Coconuts for drinking are carefully packaged and sold in many places. In Brazil, coconut water is called "√°gua de coco," and is the second best-selling juice after orange juice. Coconut water can also be found in ordinary cans or tetra paks (and often has coconut pulp or coconut jelly added) and is also marketed as a sports drink because of its high potassium and mineral content. In fact, one cup-full of coconut water contains more electrolytes than most sports drinks and more potassium than a banana.

The taste is very mild and I found it delicous. People here consider it the best for hydration. I did find info that says "Coconut water is also used as an intravenous hydration fluid in some developing countries where medical saline is unavailable." I believe you can find this in the US but we just are not familiar with it.

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