Monday, July 14, 2008
Canned coconut milk is very convenient but making it from scratch is easy, fun and satisfying. If you do it my way, it will only take 15 or 20 minutes so time is not an issue.
One swift hit with the back of your chefs knife or cleaver will crack his head open. Drain the coconut water into the nearest Hello Kitty bowl and drink it or add it to your liquid later. Separate the flesh from the hard shell. If you slip a butter knife between them it should come free pretty easy. Now here is the time saver. Most, if not all, recipes would ask you to remove the brown layer from the flesh. This is difficult, time consuming and unnecessary. If you leave it on it will still come out very white and the flavor will not be affected. Break it into smallish chunks so it's able to be pureed in your blender.
Add the chunks to your blender with two or three cups of hot tap water and puree until uniformly smooth. Separate the resulting puree through a chinous or other fine strainer, or you can pour it through a clean kitchen towel, wrap it tight and wring it out.
However you do it, the resulting solids should be surprisingly dry.
Now you have a luscious addition to hundreds of dishes both sweet and savory and it was easy to do. Part of this will be used for chilaquiles.