Even though I’m not religious, I still like to say that coconuts are one of God’s best food creations. A little addition of coconut milk to a dish can make it so smooth and fragrant, that applies to both savoury and sweet dishes. You can eat and drink it too and of course don’t forget the dessicated variety that is essential in many desserts.
You might be aware of drinking coconut juice which is the natural clear variety. You can drink those straight from the coconut (often available at South East Asian restaurants or at festivals) and you can buy them in cans and bottles now too. However, are you aware that you can also drink sweetened coconut milk? They are a Chinese/Taiwanese creation and are available in most Asian supermarkets. Yuye and I grew up with these. At any family gathering, we’d order these in cans which are then warmed up in hot water and shared amongst the table. Yuye likes to buy them in bulk from the shops and drinks them in front of the computer.
He drank so much of it that his doctor actually told him to cut down since his cholesterol was too high. Our Malaysian friends never understood drinking coconut milk because to them, coconut milk is used in cooking only.
One of my favourite dishes that Yuye used to cook was the garlic coconut prawns. As there’s so much sauce, the dish is great with a big bowl of rice to soak up all the great flavours. And if you were wondering, we don’t drink this variety of coconut milk as they are unsweetened and too thick. 😛
I took these photos a few years ago so they didn’t turn out that well, promise the dish would still turn out delicious though.
Have you ever tried sweetened coconut milk before and do you like it?
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 300g raw peeled prawns
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 shallot
- 20g butter
- 11/2 cups coconut cream
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1/2 lime
- 1 tbsp coriander for garnish
- 1/2 cup mint
- Finely chop garlic and shallots and roughly tear mint to bite size pieces.
- Lightly season prawns with salt and let it sit for 10 minutes.
- Heat oil in pan to medium heat and fry shallots and garlic for 2 minutes.
- Cook prawns on medium high heat for around 2 minutes on each side.
- Add white wine and coconut cream to pan and simmer for 2 minutes.
- Squeeze lime juice and stir through mint leaves.
- Add salt to taste and garnish with chopped coriander. Serve while hot.
- This recipe does not include any chilli, but fresh or dried chilli can be added to give this dish extra flavour.
- Vermouth can be used instead of white wine.