When it comes to drinks, I generally get by on water, tea, wine, and champagne. Very well rounded, I know, but occasionally I want something with a milky consistency that doesn’t involve dairy. Nothing against the stuff, but like many people dairy sometimes has something against me!
That’s why I decided to try my hand at making my own coconut milk. It’s a really simple activity that is great on the weekend and you’ll only need 2 ingredients.
If your store carries coconuts and you have the knife skills to crack one open, you can scoop out the fresh meat and use that instead of dried unsweetened coconut flakes. If your store doesn’t or your knives aren’t strong enough, please save yourself the frustration and use the dried variety.
Soak 2 cups of the shredded coconut in 4 cups of water for 1-2 hours. After doing some chores while you wait, pour the water and coconut into a blender and blend until it is smooth (about 2 minutes). I have a $20 Oyster, so this is definitely not a recipe that requires a high power Blendtec or Vitamix!
Now comes the trickier part. Using either a cheesecloth or nut milk bag strain the blended ingredients. Nylon nut milk bags are $15 and while they seem like an expensive investment they are well worth it when it comes to ease-of straining.
Once strained the first time I liked to do a much faster second round to ensure the smoothest consistency. The leftover coconut can be dehydrated to make coconut flour if you don’t want the excess to go to waste.
Store the milk in a clean mason jar in the refrigerator. Since this doesn’t have stabilizers or preservatives like store bough coconut milk you should drink within 4 days. This is also great with a banana and dollop of natural PB.
If you don’t like coconut, you can also use this type of method for almond milk or rice milk. Just check online for the adjusted soaking times. You can also add a touch of sweetness to your milk by using soaked dates, a bit of honey, or vanilla extract. Play around!