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Let’s Get Cooking: Coconut Milk

Coconuts are an almost perfect food: highly nutritious and rich in fiber, vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6 and minerals including iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. Unlike cow’s milk, coconut milk is lactose free so can be used as a milk substitute by  those with lactose intolerance as well as vegans says, https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/ingredient-focus-coconut-milk

Given proper care and growing conditions coconuts palms grow rapidly, can produce up to 100 coconuts a year, and live to be 100 years old!  So if you are lucky enough to have access to coconuts – and they are grown in more than 90 countries around the world, one delicious way to use them is to make your own coconut milk.

In the May/June 2017 issue of Maui Nō Ka ‘Oi magazine, “Cuckoo for Coconuts,” Ryan Burden shares his knowledge and passion for coconuts, including this recipe for coconut milk:

Coconut-Information-Ryan-Burden-copy

Ryan Burden, a young man from Hā’iku, Maui, on a mission to get more people to eat coconuts, niu in Hawaiian.

How to make homemade Coconut Milk:

Ingredients

  • One older, shaker coconut [almost fully mature, these coconuts have thick meat and are rich in coconut oil].
  • 1 or 2 rubber or spoonmeat coconuts [younger coconuts with jelly consistency meat]
Coconut-information-Milk-1-copy

You will need coconut meat

STEP 1

Split the coconut in half by tapping firmly around the circumference. Tip: You can use any hard surface, like the back of a machete, a cleaver, even a stone.

Scrape out the meat using a coconut tool or butter knife; cut into 2-inch pieces.

coconut milkINGREDIENTS
STEP 2

Fill a high-powered blender halfway with coconut pieces and top with water. Water from a sweet coconut is best, but you can use plain H20. If you do, add a teaspoon of honey and a pinch of salt.

Tip: Make sure the water is at least 73 degrees; otherwise, the oils won’t emerge.

Blend on high for 30 to 45 seconds. Tip: Coconut meat is tough. Gradually increasing the speed avoids overheating the blender.

STEP 3

Strain through a nutmilk bag or fine cheesecloth. Squeeze out every bit, and put into a jar.

Fill to the very top, leaving no air in the jar to spoil the water. Chill immediately.

After the jar is opened, milk will keep for up to a week in the refrigerator, but is best enjoyed within two days.

For the complete article including how to open a coconut, go to <https://mauimagazine.net/coconuts/

Have fun making – and drinking your homemade coconut milk.

Aloha, Renée

Let’s Get Cooking – Bali: Coconut and Lemongrass Soup

coconutlemongrass

This weekend, the second annual Bali Vegan Festival was held in Ubud.  It was fabulous – with speakers, classes, talks, movies, music, food, and, of course, ideas.

http://www.baliveganfestival.com/

To show you how wonderful – and easy – making healthy vegan food can be, here’s a recipe from the Bali Vegan Festival program.

The raw, vegan soup is a creation of Chef Arif Springs and his team at Taksu, spa and restaurant and a sponsor of the festival.  http://www.taksuspa.com/.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp cashew nuts
  • 1 tsp virgin coconut oil
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 4 stalks lemongrass
  • 1 tsp honey (or if you are vegan, substitute agave nectar, coconut nectar, or maple syrup)
  • Pinch of diced garlic
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Zucchini, cucumber and/or coriander for garnish

Directions

  1. Soak cashews in water for two hours.
  2. Cut a thin slice from a clove of garlic and dice finely.
  3. Juice lemongrass (strain out the pulp).
  4. Blend all ingredients until smooth.
  5. Garnish with pealed zucchini, cucumber and/or coriander.  A zucchini flower adds a decorative finish.

Serve at room temperature or refreshingly chilled for a hot day.  Recipe for two.

Enjoy.

Salamat malam, Renée

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