Coconut water is not to be confused for coconut milk.Though a little time consuming,the dish prepared with coconut milk is worth all the effort.The rich taste is from the high oil and sugar content of the coconut.Two varieties of coconut milk is extracted – the thick and thin varieties.
First,soak grated coconut in hot water for a few minutes and grind it for a few minutes.Squeeze out the milk and filter out the residue.This is the thick/first extract.
Soak the remaining coconut meal from the first extract in hot water and repeat the above process.This extract is less dense and is the thin/second extract.
Coconut milk is used as a side dish for aapam,a south Indian breakfast dish,used to impart richness in kheers/payasams and in a host of other dishes all over the world.Some recipes call for thick milk or the first extract alone while the others require adding the thick extract first during cooking and later adding the second extract.So,keep the first,second and third extract separately and use accordingly.
Some prepare coconut milk by soaking the coconut in hot water and squeezing out the milk without grinding.But I prefer to grind and extract.
Check out these 20+ recipe that make use of coconut milk .