Coconut Meat and Milk

Appears in
On Food and Cooking

By Harold McGee

Published 2004

  • About
A good fresh coconut should feel heavy and contain enough liquid to slosh audibly. If coconut meat is pounded in a mortar or ground finely in a blender, it forms a thick paste consisting of microscopic oil droplets and cell debris suspended in water, which makes up about half the volume. Coconut milk is made by mixing the paste with some additional water and straining to remove the solid particles. Left to stand for an hour, this milk separates into a fat-rich cream layer and a thin “skim” layer. Coconut milk can also be made from dried shredded coconut, and is readily available canned.