Our family first started making coconut milk in an effort to save money and to avoid any unwanted additives or contamination from the canning process. Since then, many strides have been made in the availability of affordable coconut milk in BPA-free cans without harmful ingredients. This recipe is still fresher and cleaner than canned and refrigerated varieties of coconut milk and is a cinch to make.
Many people do not tolerate dairy and prefer to use dairy-free options to bring a creamy flavor and consistency to a dish. While this is likely indicative of underlying gut issues that should be addressed, coconut milk is a wonderful swap out for dairy in most recipes.
2 cups shredded dried coconut, organic and unsweetened
4 cups clean, filtered water
Place coconut in the bottom of a high-speed blender. In a tea kettle or pot, heat water until simmering. Carefully pour the hot water over the coconut. Secure the lid with one hand and blend on high for about a minute. Pour the mixture through a cheesecloth or nut-milk bag into a vessel and allow the milk to cool. Once the contents are cool to the touch, squeeze the rest of the milk from the pulp. Store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. I also like to freeze my coconut milk in ice cube trays for easy access and longer shelf-life. Compost the pulp, feed it to the chickens, or dehydrate and blend it to make your own coconut flour.
When the coconut milk has cooled, it will separate with a layer of cream at the top. This can be used as a dairy-free replacement for cream and makes an excellent coconut whipped cream.