One is a quindim. Two or more are quindins.
These baked coconut and egg custard confections are great as a sweet, finger food option at parties. They also make a wonderful, small-portion dessert.
You can make them in the small muffin pans, or you can make them in the medium muffin pans like I did today. The small will make about 20 one-bite quindins while the medium muffin pan will make 10 small dessert portion quindins.
I grew up eating these in the Brazilian confeitarias (confectionery shops), and if someone would have asked me then how to make one, I would have been at a complete loss. That’s because it was so deliciously decadent and rich in flavor that it had to have been REALLY difficult to make. I would have been so intimidated that I would not even have attempted it.
Turns out, quindim is not hard to make at all. And every now and then, because it reminds me of my childhood, I have to make a batch.
Once you bite into one of these chewy, coconutty (yes, I may have created that word) bits of heaven you will understand why it has made loyal converts out of many of my non-Brazilian friends.
Do not use sweetened shredded coconut. If you do, your quindins will be too sweet. Find instead the dry, natural, unsweetened coconut flakes (usually with the dried fruit at the grocery store) and process them in your blender or food processor to make coarse crumbles.
How do all of these white ingredients turn into that beautiful, jewel-toned perfection of a confection? Stick around, read on, and I’ll show you.
In a large bowl, you first combine the coconut and the sugar.
Then strain the egg yolks and the two whole eggs directly into the coconut and sugar mixture.
Keep stirring until the inside of the strainer only has strings and solids. But be sure to scrape the underside of the strainer to loosen the refined eggs. The strained eggs are very viscous and will adhere to the bottom of the strainer, so be sure to scrape it off so it falls into the coconut mixture.
Be sure the butter is mostly melted and not too hot so it will not cook the egg around it once added.
It is important to mix everything thoroughly!
The secret to the shiny jeweled top and the crusty coconut bottom is that the ingredients separate during baking. The coconut rises to the top of the muffin cup while the egg custard settles on the bottom. When they are removed and turned upside down, you get that gorgeous, golden, chewy custard at the top. That custard is the first thing your fork or your teeth will cut through before it reaches the coconut crust.
Yeah, part of the beauty of a quindim is experiencing both the amazing taste and the textures as you eat one.
Another secret to making these is to butter the muffin cups, both bottom and sides. It’s easiest to do it with a brush using melted butter. I used to use a napkin or paper towel covered in softened butter, but a brush does a much more thorough job.
In Brazil, they use individual quindim tins instead of a muffin pan. I have not yet found similar tins here in the US and I have learned that muffin pans work very well.
Sprinkle a scant bit of sugar in the bottom of the muffin cups, then turn the pan around in different directions to coat the whole bottom of the cups, as well as a little bit up the sides. Turn the muffin pan upside down over a sink or the trash to get rid of excess sugar.
Because this is a custard, it needs to bake in a bain-marie. I just use a large aluminum cookie sheet with raised sides and add the water so that it goes up well short of the lip of the muffin pan. Then into the oven to bank until…
…the custard is set and the coconut is a definite golden, toasted brown color. If these puppies don’t set, they will fall apart. Not sure of they are set? Gently use a butter knife to loosen the edges and very slowly lift one up to inspect the firmness of the bottom. If it has not set, put it back in the oven for a while longer.
Once they are done baking, they must be completely cooled before removing from the muffin cups.
See what I mean about the textures? The top (which was once the bottom) is an almost translucent, jewel-toned yellow/orange. The bottom is a beautiful, rich coconut crust.
You have to have a little patience before serving your quindins, because the flavor is best when they are cold. So once they have come to room temperature and have been removed from the muffin pan, keep them in the refrigerator until they are thoroughly chilled before serving.
Blogging is so much fun when you get to eat what you write about! Oh my goodness. I do so love these!
- 14 tablespoons of sugar, plus more for coating muffin cups
- 1 tablespoon sweet butter, softened, plus more for preparing the muffin cups
- 1 cup grated or crumbled dry coconut, unsweetened
- 10 egg yolks
- 2 whole eggs
- Preheat the oven to 375° F.
- In a mixing bowl, mix the coconut and the sugar.
- Strain the egg yolks and the two whole eggs through a fine-mesh strainer directly into the coconut and sugar mixture.
- Add the tablespoon of butter to the mixture and stir well until everything is evenly distributed.
- Prepare either 20 cups of a small muffin pan or 10 cups of a medium muffin pan by brushing melted butter along the bottom and the sides of the cups.
- Sprinkle scant amount of sugar in the bottom of the muffin cups, just enough to coat the bottom and sides in a consistent layer. Discard excess sugar.
- Fill the muffin cups to ⅔ with the egg and coconut mixture.
- Create a bain-marie using a raised-lip cookie sheet with water. Place the muffin pan in the bain-marie.
- Bake for 40-50 minutes or until the coconut crust on top is a golden, toasted brown and the custard has set.
- Cool to room temperature then chill before serving. Flavor is best when cold.
This recipe makes 20 one-bite portions if using a small muffin pan or 10 small dessert portions using a medium muffin pan.