Coconut milk has always been a staple in Thai cooking but these days it's used in lots of different dishes. Let's take a look at what coconut milk is and how to make your own in the comfort of your own kitchen.
What is coconut?
Coconut is the fruit of a coconut tree also known as a coconut palm. Coconuts are pretty versatile as the outside husk is extremely fibrous and now make great bowls, the inside contains edible white flesh and clear liquid known as coconut water. The flesh can be eaten fresh, dried or used to make coconut cream.
Is there a difference between coconut milk and coconut cream?
Coconut cream is the thicker cousin of coconut milk.
To make coconut cream, the ration of water to coconut flesh is 1 : 4
To make coconut milk, the ratio is more like 1 : 1.
So essentially coconut milk is watered down coconut cream.
Is coconut milk healthier?
Coconut milk is healthier because it contains less saturated fat.
100ml coconut milk: 660kJ, 1.6g protein, 14.5g saturated fat
100ml coconut cream: 805kJ, 1.5g protein, 17.g saturated fat
100ml Greek yoghurt with a drop of coconut essence: 529kJ, 4.8g protein, 6.5g saturated fat
How do I make my own coconut milk?
Purchase a can of coconut cream.
Add it to a bowl or jug with 1 -2 cups of water or stock.
Mix with a wooden spoon, use half or the amount desired then freeze the remainder is ice-cubes trays.
Note that there will be a difference in consistency as the cream is much thicker. To thicken the coconut milk, opt for the yoghurt alternative or add cornflour.
Comment below how you use coconut milk in cooking and whether or not you found this post helpful.