Coconut Milk

We have been experimenting with coconut milk recipes around the house for the last month and I’m excited to share the health benefits of it and an easy recipe for you to try at home.

First, what is coconut milk?  Coconut milk is made from the coconut by grating the “meat” of the coconut and squeezing it through cheesecloth.  The milky white fluid it creates is about 90% fat and the rest is protein and carbs.  The fats are healthy, medium-chain fatty acids, and are known to be highly beneficial.

Some benefits of coconut milk may include:

1. Prevents Anemia – Iron deficiency is a very common nutritional problem throughout the world.  A cup of coconut milk contains approximately a quarter of the daily value of iron.

2. Relaxes muscles – Magnesium is known to calm over-active nerve cells in the body.  It is a common ingredient in sleep aids and coconut milk is rich in it.

3. May relieve arthritis – Coconut milk contains selenium, an important antioxidant that controls free radicals.  Low selenium is often the cause of rheumatoid arthritis.

4. Helps lower high blood pressure – The Potassium found in coconut milk will help in lowering blood pressure.

5. Fortifies the Immune System – Coconut milk provides the immune system with a large dose of vitamin C to help ward off colds and other illness.

Here are two recipes to get you started:

Coconut & Fruit Smoothie
1 Can Cold Coconut Milk
1 Cup Frozen Blueberries
1.5 Cups Frozen Strawberries
1 Tsp Cinnamon
2 Squares Cold Dark Chocolate

Blend until smooth.  Add water to thin if necessary.  Serves 2-3.

Chicken, Sweet Potato, and Coconut Curry
1 Tbsp Coconut Oil
2-3 Tsp Mild Curry Powder
2 Large Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts (Cut into bite-sized pieces, could also use chicken thighs)
2 Medium-sized Sweet Potatoes (Peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces)
1 Medium-sized Onion (Cut in eighths)
1.5 Cups Chicken Stock
1 Can Coconut Milk (14 oz. can)

Heat the oil in a deep frying pan, stir in the curry paste, and fry for 1 minute.  Add the chicken and sweet potatoes, and stir to coat in the paste.  Pour in the stock and coconut milk.  Bring to the boil, and then simmer for 20 minutes.  Season to taste before serving.  Serves 2-4.

(Recipe taken from paleofood.com)

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