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Friday, December 16, 2011

Back to Basics ~ How to Make Coconut Milk / Kobbari Paalu


Blogging Marathon 11 starts from today and "Preps & Preserves" is going to be my theme for this week. The prep work before the cooking process or the ones which ease the actual cooking qualify for this theme. The first post in this series is going to be preparing coconut milk from scratch in a cinch from frozen coconut. Preparing coconut milk in your own kitchen is actually a simple and quick process. The final product is more flavorful, fresh, inexpensive and chemical free compared to the store bought canned ones.

Method:
* If starting from scratch, select a ripe coconut. Hit hard with a hammer or against a small rock. It may take a few attempts to split into two shells. Collect the coconut water in a clean container to drink later. Separate the coconut meat from the shell using a knife and rinse the pieces with clean water. For a short cut method as I did here, thaw shredded frozen coconut by nuking it in the microwave. (For about a cup of coconut used, microwave for less than a minute.)
* Add fresh coconut pieces / thawed frozen coconut and water to a blender and grind until smooth. How much water is added depends upon the consistency of the milk you prefer / need. Some use hot water / milk to grind the coconut. I simply use fresh, cold water.


* Cover a bowl with a cheese cloth or a thin cotton cloth. Pour the ground coconut mixture into the cloth. When the liquid is collected in the bowl, squeeze the mixture in the cloth bundle to get as much liquid as possible.


* The pulp can be ground one more time adding some more water and repeating the above steps. I do not prefer to do it since the second round milk is thin and flavorless. Discard the pulp since it has no flavor or taste of the coconut, you originally started with. Basically, it has nothing to contribute to any dish.
* Coconut milk is used in several sweet / savory dishes to make them special. I usually use it to make pulaos, kheers and savory side dishes. Don't try to cook it on high heat since it may curdle.
* If not using immediately, it can be refrigerated for a few days. I have so far refrigerated the home made coconut milk only up to 4 days. When not touched, the coconut cream settles at the top while the watery liquid is at the bottom. Just stir and use it.


Check here to know what my fellow marathoners have come up with.

13 comments:

Srivalli said...

Nothing beats homemade coconut milk..looking forward to your series Suma..

Gayathri Kumar said...

This is a very useful post...

veena krishnakumar said...

Anytime it is homemade coconut milk:-)...i feel the store bought one gives an odd taste wen cooked

The Pumpkin Farm said...

very eager to check all 7 posts for this theme, it is the most useful theme. Liked your demo

Rajani said...

This is a very useful post for me.

A Spoonful of Yumm said...

refreshing ! useful post :)

Priya's Feast said...

Luvly post on making coconut milk..I will drink it in one gulp..

Jayashree said...

Ever since I discovered Dabur's coconut milk in the shops, I have stopped making it at home. Your post has reminded me of just how simple it is to make it at home.

Kalyani said...

Useful post Suma, although I never make Coconut milk, as my family somehow doesnt prefer the taste. Neverthless, look forward to the series !


Kalyani
Sizzling Tastebuds

ANU said...

awesome post dear...

SYF&HWS - Cook With SPICES" Series - CARDAMOM (Dec 5th to Jan 5th)

Priya said...

Incredible post, i do prepare the same way too..

how to " ideas" said...

great .. thank you for this advice

how to " ideas" said...

great .. thank you for this advice