When I was discussing on writing a recipe for coconut milk ,my family members were not too convinced to give a post dedicated to it.I then explained to them that even these come in ready made packets and one of my friends had shared that using ready made shredded coconut or coconut milk has so many ill effects to human body including obesity and infertility due to those preservatives..There is one more reason behind sharing this recipe.Recently when I had met my brother in a family function he was quoting that coconut milk is ranked next to breast milk in terms of nutrition.It is extremely nutritious and healthy as per his doctor.
I finally found some justified reasons beyond writing this recipe other it being very helpful and essential for beginners.In our family coconut and coconut milk are the most important ingredients in cooking. We use coconut milk in all biriyani/one pot meals,gravies,aapam/idiyappam/idly/dosa side dishes,kheer & payasam,smoothies & milkshakes.I have never used ready made packs.I always prefer fresh and home made ones.I am also adding tips and health benefits in this section.
Do check the recipes which use coconut milk below
- Coconut(grated)-1 cup
- Warm water-1.5 cups
1.Add the grated coconut to the mixer jar and give it a run.
2.Now add half cup of water and run the mixer.
3.Strain this in a filter or a muslin cloth. This is the first and thick milk.
4.Now again add the coconut and water and extract milk.You can either squeeze with your palm or use a spoon.
5.This is the second milk.
6.Add the last half of cup of water and give a run in the mixer.
7.Extract using the filter.This is the third or last milk. Images below are in order(left to right).
8.You can use the thick milk in making biriyani,second milk in thickening gravies and the last milk for cooking vegetables in stew/sothi recipe.
Prefer using fresh grated coconut.
If your coconut is dry it wouldn’t yield rich milk beyond first extraction.
Choose fresh and rich coconut for extracting milk.
Use this immediately.This can’t be stored.
Don’t heat first and second milk directly as they will curdle and spoil the entire dish.
Use the thick milk in kheers after cooling to have a rich flavour and taste.
If your coconut is thick and creamy/milky enough you can even go for extraction of 4 th time.
You need not separate these and use for all dishes.Since I had extracted this for stew I had them segregated all through.
Adding warm water helps in getting a thick and better quantity of milk.You can use normal water too.
You can also use the fresh coconut water taken out the shell.
Please use coconut milk in moderation as it is heavy.
Do not store the dishes made with coconut milk for a long time.
Coconut milk can be added in baby food since 6 + months as per knowledge.
Please consider family history of allergies before introducing this.
I wouldn’t recommend offering coconut milk as such to babies below 1 year as they might replace breastfeeding.
You can offer a glass of coconut milk to your kid above 2 or 3 years even twice a week.
Do have a word with your doctor before introducing any new food to your baby.
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Nutrition facts about coconut milk:
Coconut milk is rich in lauric acid which is present in breast milk and this makes it a great complement in baby food post one year.It has one of the healthiest fats which are needed by babies.
Coconut milk is rich in minerals and vitamins including iron,magnesium,zinc,folate,vitamin B6,potassium,phosphorous,thiamin,niacin and Vitamin E.
They have plenty of good fats which help in overcoming nutritional deficiency and also helps in development of brain.
It has great anti microbial properties like coconut water and hence it can fight against virus and bacteria.
Coconut milk can cure intestinal worms and even ulcers.
Selenium found in coconut milk helps in curing joint related pains and inflammation.
Coconut milk has saturated fat and its lauric acid content helps in regulating cholesterol and it boosts your HDL level.
It helps in anti aging.
It helps you recover from fatigue and strengthens your immunity system.
It can be an excellent substitute to cows milk for babies above 3 years and it is definitely not an alternative to BREASTFEED/FORMULA till 2 years of age.
Coconut milk is not a good source of calcium . Do consider this if your baby is calcium deficient.
Please do not use store bought ones as they have plenty of preservatives