Coconut Milk

I remember drinking fresh young coconuts while living in Dar-es-Salaam  (which means Port of Peace, love that name) as a child. They are sold at many street corners where they are piled in a mountain. The vendor will cut them for you and once we had finished drinking we would give it back to have the creamy flesh scraped inside. My Mum stays in Dar-es-Salaam and at her place she gets a vendor coming right to the door to sell fresh coconuts every single day. She like most people has the vendor put the liquid and flesh in a bowl for her to consume later on. I even have a lovely black and white picture of my Mum holding me in one hand as a 6 month old baby and a Young Coconut in the other and both of us looking very happy. The picture was taken in Somalia where we lived for an year.

 

Coconut trees

 Coconut milk and young fresh Coconuts are a staple in the Tanzanian diet. The local people use coconut milk daily for cooking their vegetables and rice. The oil is used for skin and hair. They have lovely gleaming skin. The shell is used as a utensil and the husk of the mature coconuts and the leaves are used to make mats.  I remember the mature coconut meat being grated by hand on a

tool specially made just for that purpose. The grated meat is soaked in water and then squeezed by hand to get the coconut milk. The water content is adjusted to get the required thickness. The meat is soaked again for a second pressing which would be a diluted version and would be used to cook rice in. The grated meat is also used to make a coconut chutney which is used almost daily or dried in the sun for using in other recipes.

The coconut plants have many fruits per plant at any time, and the fruits are rich in calories and essential vitamins, minerals and electrolytes. Although Coconuts are thought of as a fruit or nut, they are really a seed. Coconut has been shown to benefit hypothyroid patients. Dr Mary Enig calls Coconut a functional food.

“Approximately 50% of the fatty acids in coconut fat are lauric acid. Lauric acid is a medium chain fatty acid, which has the additional beneficial function of being formed into monolaurin in the human or animal body. Monolaurin is the anti-viral, antibacterial, and antiprotozoal monoglyceride used by the human or animal to destroy lipid coated viruses such as HIV, herpes, cytomegalovirus, influenza, various pathogenic bacteria including listeria monocytogenes and heliobacter pylori, and protozoa such as giardia lamblia. Some studies have also shown some antimicrobial effects of the free lauric acid.”

 

 

Because a coconut palm can have so many different uses it is called the ‘tree of heaven’ or ‘kalpavriksha’ in India.

I teach my clients how to make Coconut Milk in a Vita Mix. (This blender is so worth saving for. You can call Sue at Vitamix with any questions you have, getting free shipping or buying a refurbished model at 1800 848 2649 ext 2308. She is so friendly and helpful).

I was delighted to find Peggy and Curtis  at Raw Inspiration had pictures of the whole process. This is the synchronicity I talk about when living a high raw lifestyle.

You will benefit most from it when taken in its raw form. There are an incredible amount of ways to use Coconut in the raw cuisine including smoothies, soups, desserts, ice creams, salads, thai style dishes etc. The flesh of the Young Coconut is cut into strips and used as a noodle replacement.

The Coconut can be cracked as shown below or after drilling the hole you can roll the Coconut in a towel and then break it up with a hammer. You can also just hold the Coconut in your palm over a large container and hit it with the hammer right in the center. The liquid will fall into the container. If any pieces of husk or shell fall into the liquid, just use a sieve to remove them.

Dr Hill from Young Living also suggested using fresh Coconut Milk to make your own kefir using a kefir starter. This is especially benefical for Candida sufferers as they benefit from the probiotics in the kefir as well as the antifungal activity of the Coconut.

Here are the instructions from Peggy and Curtis.

Making your own coconut milk is easy! Here we will show how to process a mature coconut found in most grocery stores into a creamy, delicious treat.

Choose a coconut that is full of water (heavy). You should be able to hear it sloshing when you shake it. Using a wine key, find the weakest of the three “holes” and screw it open. Pull out the key and this should leave you with a nice opening.

Pour out the coconut water. You may have to jiggle the nut to get it all out. Taste the water for freshness. It should be sweet with a salty background flavor. If it tastes fermented then you may want to try another coco.

Take the coco outside and use a hammer to pop the nut open. I like to actually put the coco down on the cement and give it a good whack! I also like to meditate on the fact that the hammer is only a tool that opens the coconut. It does not define it. A healthy diet is also just a tool that opens me up to more vitality, not who I am.

Beautiful 🙂

By giving it a few more whacks, it will be easier to pry out the meat. Use a butter knife and pry out the meat from the hard shell. Do not worry about the brown skin that is on the white flesh. Only remove the HARD shell.

Rinse the meat well and put it into your blender. Fill the blender up with filtered water. An option here is adding a little vanilla and sweetener like honey or agave syrup.

Blend well and I mean well. At least 30 seconds maybe a minute. Blend until the coconut meat is a fine pulp. Strain the mixture so the pulp is excluded from the milk.

Now you have a creamy delight! You can add this to smoothies or pour over some diced fruit, or just drink some. Also a deliciously decadent treat is to let the milk sit in the fridge overnight and when it separates spoon out the cream from on top. Add a little honey and vanilla to this cream and stir well with a spoon. It tastes just like whipped cream! Sooooooo good! Use the pulp to make a pie crust or raw cookies or whatever you can imagine. Have FUN!

Anybody have a Fresh Young Coconut? I love them but do not buy the Thai ones since I found out that they are irradiated :(. I will wait till I visit my Mum or my brother in Zanzibar. His hotel “Ahlan Palace” buys fresh produce from the local market every morning for making their dishes. Coconuts are found and used in abundance.

Coconut

Fatma

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3 Comments »

  1. Zophia said

    Thanks so much for this post! It was very informational and helpful!

    XOXOXOXO!! =D

  2. loverawfood said

    Zophia

    Welcome. I am glad you found this helpful. 🙂 I loved writing it.

    XOXO
    Fatma

  3. […] and is so easy to make if you do not have to make the coconut milk yourself. Check here on  how to make your own coconut milk as well as it’s nutritional […]

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