25 July 2013

MOOing Coconut Milk and Cream


I just popped into the Cheapskates forum and the chatter is about mooing coconut milk or cream (technically the same thing, just a different name in different areas).

Now you can MOO it very easily, probably even easier than buying it when you consider you need to go to the supermarket, find it on the shelves, stand in the queue, pay for it and then get it home.

A 400ml tin of Coles Savings brand coconut cream costs 97 cents.

A 500g packet of desiccated coconut from Coles costs $2.92 and is enough to make 4 cups, or 1 litre, of coconut milk. The difference in price is around 26 cents more expensive to buy the tin.

There are two ways to make coconut cream; option one takes about 2 hours, option two takes just a few minutes. Again the choice is yours - the end result is the same.

 

Option 1:  Soaking method


You will need:
250g coconut
2 cups water
A blender
Cheesecloth or Chux or muslin for draining

Step 1.  Soak coconut in cold water for 2 hours.

Step 2.  Put the coconut and water into the blender and blend on high until the mixture is very smooth.

Step 3.  Once blended, pour the mixture into the cheesecloth, gathering up the sides and twisting to close.

Step 4.  Twist the cheesecloth tight, squeezing as much moisture as possible out of the  pulp. Keep twisting and squeezing until you can't get any more moisture from the pulp.

Pour into a clean jug or jar and chill.

Option 2:  Not quite instant boiling water method


You will need:
250g coconut
2 cups water
A blender
Cheesecloth or Chux or muslin for draining

Step 1.  Bring 2 cups water to a boil and pour over coconut. Let cool for 10 minutes.

Step 2.  Put the mixture into the blender and blend until very smooth. This takes about 5 minutes so be patient.

Step 3.  Once blended, pour the mixture into the cheesecloth, gathering up the sides and twisting to close.

Step 4.  Twist the cheesecloth tight, squeezing as much moisture as possible out of the  pulp. Keep twisting and squeezing until you can't get any more moisture from the pulp.

Pour into a clean jug or jar and chill.

Now you have your coconut milk/cream to use in smoothies or sauces or curries or cupcakes or pancakes or whatever you are making, but what do you do with the leftover coconut pulp?

You use it of course!

You can use it as is, adding it to muffins or cakes or breads or desserts. Or add it to yoghurt or fruit salad.

Or you can dry it and use it in baking as desiccated coconut.

Or you can dry it, grind it and use it as coconut flour. If you're on a GF diet, you'll know just how expensive coconut flour can be. Now I'm going to tell you just how easy it is to MOO it, you won't ever want to buy it again.

To make desiccated coconut or coconut flour


You will need:
The pulp from making the coconut milk
A baking sheet
Baking paper
Food processor or blender

Step 1. Pre-heat oven to 80 degrees Celsius (or as low as it will go if it doesn't go down this low).

Step 2. Line a baking sheet with baking paper. Do not be tempted to grease the tray or use cooking spray - it will ruin the end result.

Step 3. Spread the coconut pulp in a very thin layer over the baking sheet.

Step 4. Bake for 45 minutes or until the coconut is completely dry.

Step 5. Let cool a few minutes. If you want it as desiccated coconut, let it cool completely and put into a canister.

To make coconut flour add the dry coconut to a food processor or blender and process in short bursts until it is ground to a very fine texture.

That's it. Easy. A little cheaper than buying coconut cream, a lot cheaper than buying coconut flour.

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