"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > Recipes & Ingredients > International Cuisines and Ethnic Cookery
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 06-30-2008, 04:59 PM   #1
Cook
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 57
Coconut milk

I am interested in trying Thai food. I don't care for shredded coconut. I've never really had coconut milk; owever, I'm willing to try it. Can anybody recommend a good, all-purpose variety of coconut milk? If so, please provide the name of the brand. When using coconut milk in Thai cooking, should it be sweetened or unsweetened, or is this just a matter of personal preference? I would like the coconut milk to have a smooth and creamy consistency, and be fit to use in both savory dishes and sweet dishes. I don't want any artificial substitutes, just pure coconut milk.

uniqueenigma is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2008, 05:29 PM   #2
Assistant Cook
 
gumbotc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: tuscumbia al
Posts: 26
the brand that I have been able to find in the grocery is Thai Kitchen, it has been consistent. been using it for about 10 years. You do not want to use a sweetened milk in any Thai dishes.
gumbotc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2008, 06:02 PM   #3
Executive Chef
 
larry_stewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Long Island, New York
Posts: 3,966
Ive never had a problem with any brand coconut milk ive used in the past. I usually get them in a can, about 14oz I guess. Usually pay about $1.00 - $1.50.

Make sure it is coconut milk, not coconut water. Make sure it is UNSWEETENED, and shake it before u open it, because it has a tendency to separate a little. Although, if u are using he whole can, u can just dump everything in and it will blend together as it heats up.
larry_stewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2008, 06:24 PM   #4
Cook
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 57
Okay, well thank you for the advice with what type of coconut milk to use in savory dishes. Can you recommend a good brand that is ideal for use in sweet dishes? One that is lightly sweet?
uniqueenigma is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2008, 06:30 PM   #5
Master Chef
 
CharlieD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: USA,Minnesota
Posts: 9,665
I hate coconut, but the first time i went to Thai restaurant and had chicken coconut soup it was a love at the first site. There was a thread here about that soup you can probably search and find it. I used it to make the soup at home it was awesome.
__________________
You are what you eat.
CharlieD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2008, 06:38 PM   #6
Chef Extraordinaire
 
kitchenelf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 19,725
Send a message via MSN to kitchenelf
I believe for your sweet coconut dishes the addition of sugar would be included. Do you have a recipe in mind? That would help.
__________________
kitchenelf

"Count yourself...you ain't so many" - quote from Buck's Daddy
kitchenelf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2008, 07:40 PM   #7
Executive Chef
 
larry_stewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Long Island, New York
Posts: 3,966
My friend from Burma, makes a burmese dish/ soup with chicken broth, coconut milk, served over rice noodles, topped with lime juice, coriander, fried garlic and hot pepper flakes. Very simple, but very good. ( there is also chicken and quail eggs in the soup)
larry_stewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2008, 08:45 PM   #8
Head Chef
 
Yakuta's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Chicago
Posts: 1,208
Sweet coconut cream brand that I use is called Coco Lopez. I use it to make pinacoladas.

You can always use the unsweetened version and add sugar to it. As others stated it would be good to know what you are looking to make with it.

As Larry indicated all brands of coconut milk are good so no need to spend money on any expensive brands. Coconut milk also comes in low fat variety (if you are watching calories). Another thing I love to keep in my pantry is Maggie's dry coconut powder. It is sold in quite a few Asian stores. It has individual pouches. You open one pouch and mix it with water and viola you have instant coconut milk.
Yakuta is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2008, 03:15 AM   #9
Master Chef
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Galena, IL
Posts: 7,970
I usually buy Thai Kitchen simply because that is what I can get on a regular basis. What you have to be careful of is buying the stuff that is meant for making pina coladas and deserts. I believe it is called cream of coconut or some such, and really won't work in main dishes. Oh, dear, Yakuta's post came up while I was writing. Coco Lopez for sweet dishes, but I wouldn't use it to make a curry or soup. I do buy the "lite" version of coconut milk when I can find it ... it is one of those things that hubby and I cannot really taste much difference in flavor, so may as well cut some fat.
Claire is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2008, 07:11 AM   #10
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 4,764
Send a message via MSN to urmaniac13 Send a message via Skype™ to urmaniac13
Another practical option would be using powdered coconut milk mix, to which you add some water and it will turn into coconut milk. The convenient thing is you can use as much or as little as needed and the rest can be conserved well, while I had problems with the tinned ones often, when I didn't need the whole thing and I put the rest in the fridge and it ended up going bad.

My powder is manufactured by Maggi, it tastes authentic enough.

Ingredients:
Cononut Milk solids
maltodextrin
lactose
sodium phosphate
urmaniac13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2008, 10:08 AM   #11
Chef Extraordinaire
 
jennyema's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Boston and Cape Cod
Posts: 10,196
Both sweet and savory recipes that call for coconut milk use the same thing: coconut milk.

Coconut milk won't be smooth and creamy. It separates in the can. You will have watery liquid and semisolid fat. You can shake the can (and you should), but you will not be able to emulsify it into a creamy liquid. That's ok though.

Recipes that call for coconut cream are referring to something like the product "Coco Lopez" which is a creamy sweetened product, sort of like condensed milk.

Don't use Coco Lopez in savory Thai dishes.
__________________
Less is not more. More is more and more is fabulous.
jennyema is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-08-2008, 10:22 AM   #12
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 266
I have always used Aroy-D brand coconut milk and have tried many other brands, but I like Aroy-D the most. You can usually find this brand at asian supermarkets.
__________________
Let's Pour Tea!
Calya is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2008, 03:59 AM   #13
Master Chef
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Galena, IL
Posts: 7,970
By the way, coconut milk freezes well. As others have mentioned, shake it well. Use as much as you need, then freeze the rest.
Claire is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2008, 04:24 AM   #14
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 453
Send a message via AIM to Russellkhan
I have to respectfully disagree with those who say all the brands are good. I've got two favorite brands and have tried several that are pretty poor, and a few that are in between. I actually got to taste several brands side by side which really illustrated the differences.

The brands I've liked are Mae Ploy and Chaokoh. The worst I've tried are brands that come in cans that look very similar to Chaokoh's can. One of them even had a similar name: Chaodoc. I don't remember the name of the other lookalike. Dragonfly also made a very good one, but I think they had a couple different cans and one was good the other not so good, So I'd stay away from theirs unless you feel like experimenting. Even among the better brands, the quality can vary. You want to get the creamiest stuff, the way to tell is to shake the cans lightly. You'll feel less liquid moving in the creamier cans.

Avoid "light" or "lite" coconut milk. It's a ripoff - the same stuff with more water. You can add water yourself if you want it.

I haven't tried the powdered varieties yet, have been meaning to.

Russ
Russellkhan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2008, 07:11 AM   #15
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 262
Try the brand Chaokoh(sp?) The can is light brown on

the top with white letters. I use it all the time. Also used by the restaurants in my area. Also thick coconut milk or coconut cream refers to the solid fats that float to the top of milk when freshly made. Don't confuse coconut cream with the sweetened cream of coconut in the can.
Lizannd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2008, 10:15 AM   #16
Sous Chef
 
B'sgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Utah
Posts: 863
I use Imperial Dragon coconut milk. I use it in stir fry with lemon grass and in soups. It also makes great shakes! I also use it to fatten up my malnourished child since he can't have regular milk right now. (Mix it with a little almond milk--it's not bad. It probably makes a good shake as well).
__________________
Michelle
https://foodmakeshimsick.blogspot.com/

B'sgirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2008, 11:34 AM   #17
Senior Cook
 
Cooper'sMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Chesterfield, Missouri/Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 137
Not all Thai food uses coconut. Here is one that doesn't...King Prawns Pancetta Fried Rice here.
__________________
Tucker's Mum aka Cooper's Mom

--Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.
Cooper'sMom is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
None

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:18 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.