For more ways to eat a coconut, try
Coconut Juice and
Eat a Sprouted Coconut
Step 1: Get a Coconut
Star demonstrates a good safe way to get them.
Her pruning clipper has a pole that extends about 15 feet. She stands on a ladder to get high enough to reach these nuts. She cuts the stem the coconut hangs from and makes sure she's not standing right under it.
Step 2: Husk the Coconut
The following method is what they use to husk coconuts commercially, in poor countries anyway.
Get a stake that's sharp on top. It doesn't have to be dangerously sharp, just pointy. Some people like a chisel shape. A pickaxe stuck in the ground works well as shown here. Some people use the pointy end, some use the chisel end.
You can use a machete to lop off a sapling or tree branch at the right height. I often see that near a pile of husks. The right height is between knee and waist height.
Jam the spike into the husk near the stem end. It should be easy to do because the husk is less dense there. The coconut husk will have several lobes. Jam the spike between the lobes with the coconut tilted at an angle. Pry the lobe off. It should start ripping off and then stop. Rotate the coconut, jam it on the stake and start ripping the next lobe. I usually do it three times. The second or third lobe just rips off because the other lobes aren't holding it on. Then pry the remaining lobes off. Rip them off with your hand if they're just hanging on. Don't impale yourself on the stake.
Step 3: There's Got to Be an Angle
That's what works on these coconuts anyway. Your coconuts may be a different variety.
Step 4: Nature's Bottle Cap
This is a Marshallese trick. It keeps the coconut from spoiling. It's easy to knock or cut the "cap" off later since there are no long fibers in this section. You don't have to leave that green stuff on at the very top, but it looks nice in this picture. An inch or two left over the top of the coconut is plenty.
Step 5: Open the Coconut
The juice is like nature's gatorade, only better. It's got all the electrolytes you need in the tropical places where coconuts grow.
It's also sterile if it's from a picked coconut. They used it in WW2 as IV fluid for wounded soldiers or soldiers sick from the wet kind of tropical diseases. So I've been told anyway.
Probably a coconut on the ground is sterile also, but some of them crack and go sour after they hit the ground.
To open the coconut, whack it on the circumference with the back of your machete. You don't have to hit it very hard. Just keep whacking it around the equator. You can also use a rock or anything that isn't too heavy. If you hit it with something heavy there won't be good "impedance matching" and the nut won't crack easily. The crack will then grow toward wherever you hit the nut.
After you break the nut in half, you can break it into smaller pieces the same way.
Step 6: Butcher for Meat
If raw coconut bothers you, cook the meat in a microwave for a couple of minutes. The flavor is slightly different and maybe the protein is easier to absorb.
Step 7: Blender Method
Cut the meat up into chunks your blender can handle. Put the meat in the blender.
Cover it with enough water for your blender to be happy. If you saved the coconut juice, use that. But probably you drank that right away while fighting with the nut.
Blend it up. If the whole pitcher isn't churning stop and pulse the blades or add more water. When it stops getting thicker you're done.
Step 8: Strainer
One of the traditional methods is to save some fibers from the husk, put the shredded coconut on that, pour the juice on it, then wrap the fibers around it and wring it out.