Coconut Milk is a white, milky (duh) liquid made by simmering shredded coconut flesh in water. The flavor from the coconut seeps into the water and once the shredded coconut is strained away, you’re left with coconut milk. As the milk sits, a thick, creamy substance rises to the surface – coconut cream.
If you’ve ever opened up a can of coconut milk to find a thick liquid at the bottom and a thick, creamy layer on the surface, the liquid is coconut milk and the top, semi-solid layer is coconut cream. A quick stir and it’s ready to use in soups, curries or anything else you want to make deliciously coconut-y. Dairy-free folks can substitute coconut milk in many instances where regular milk would be used. (Think Coconut Caramel Sauce…)
Coconut Cream can be purchased separately, canned. Its rich, coconut taste and thick consistency make it a wonderful addition to desserts and some sauces; however you shouldn’t use it in place of coconut milk unless you’re comfortable making some adjustments to your recipe like thinning the cream with a liquid to reach the right consistency. Coconut cream is thicker because it has less water content than coconut milk. It’s also higher in fat (as creams are, sigh).
Cream of Coconut is coconut cream with sugar added. LOTS of sugar. This is NOT what you want to use in your savory soups, sauces or curries. It’s best suited for cocktails and desserts, like that Strawberry Pina Colada Pop up there. (See what I did there?)
Now, about those pops. If you like (strawberry) pina coladas, getting caught in the rain and all that stuff, you will live for these. They’re quick – freezing time aside, easy and the perfect refreshing treat for the grownups in your life. Yes, these popsicles are adults only because they are boozed up. In keeping with our pina colada theme these bad boys have a splash of rum mixed in. Mix a batch up tonight and they’ll be ready for your weekend BBQs!!
If you don’t have popsicle molds, place 3-ounce paper cups on a sheet tray. Pour the mix into the cups, pop them in the freezer just until they start to freeze and insert sticks. If you put the sticks in while the mix is still liquid the sticks won’t stand up straight.
Be sure to include the juice with the crushed pineapple for added flavor.
For chunkier pops, blend the mix just until the berries begin to break down.
Using the blender
Waiting for these yummy pops to freeze
- 1 cup chopped strawberries
- ½ cup crushed pineapple (with juice)
- ½ cup Cream of Coco
- ¼ cup rum
- Place strawberries, pineapple, Cream of Coco and rum in blender. Process until berries and pineapple are smooth. If you like a chunkier pop, process just until berries are chunky.
- Pour into 2-ounce popsicle molds and freeze at least 4 hours. Run popsicle molds under warm water to loosen then remove from molds and serve.
- Makes 8 2-ounce popsicles.