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Fresh Coconut Milk?

Hi 'Hounds - Does anyone know anywhere in L.A. area that sells fresh coconut milk? Thanks!

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  1. check out BEVERLY HILLS JUICE CO.
    on Beverly Blvd approx 4 blks east of La Cienega.

    1. Café Bloom on Pico serves the actual coco.
      Once done w/ the milk, ask for a spoon & scratch the innards.
      Fantastic!
      Seen the cocos also in some retail places, not too many though.

      1 Reply
      1. re: RicRios

        Isn't that coconut water/juice, and not milk, which is made from shredding and squeezing the meat?

      2. On the westside, the Co-op on broadway sells fresh thai coconuts. Last time I was at 99 Ranch in San Gabriel, they were selling then too and alot cheaper! Rawvolution in Santa Monica has them for $3-4 each. If you really don't want to chop them open, get them there.

        1. Are you looking for coconut juice, as in the slightly opaque liquid found inside coconuts, or coconut milk, as in the thicker, milky stuff you get when you add water to grated coconut and squeeze it out?

          If you want fresh coconut juice, most any asian market sells young coconuts. I get them from 99 Ranch in Van Nuys usually. You just cut the top off and drink the liquid. Use a spoon to scrape out all the young coconut flesh. I don't know of any places that sell fresh coconut milk. I usually just box small boxes of it (Kara brand) from 99 Ranch.

          1 Reply
          1. re: boogiebaby

            Hi everyone -

            I guess I can only repeat that I am looking for somewhere that sells fresh coconut milk.

            That is - the sweet, milky white cooking base derived from the meat of a mature coconut.

            "The color and rich taste of the milk can be attributed to the high oil content and sugars. In Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia coconut milk is called santan and in the Philippines it is called gata. In Thailand it is called ga-ti and used in many Thai curries. It should not be confused with coconut water (coconut juice), which is the naturally-occurring liquid found inside a coconut." (This definition is according to Wikipedia.)

            I love poisson cru and a few other recipes that require fresh coconut milk - it is rather labor intensive I was hoping someone knew of a market that sold it fresh processed for a fee.

            If anyone knows I will keep checking back - if you are a market and want to sell it - let me know I will buy from you.

            I am not interested in fresh coconuts, coconut water, macaroons, coconut cream pie, or putting the lime in the coconut . . .

            :-)

            CB

          2. Thanks, everyone, for your suggestions but coconut milk is a coconut PRODUCT made from coconuts - not fresh coconut, coco water, or creme de coco. Not one of the responses below was right, but I finally found frozen coconut milk - at Mitsua Market - so I thought I'd pass that on. It makes making coconut pudding and authentic poisson cru possible (and here is a recipe if you want to try it - I say skip the vanilla to be super authentic ): http://www.vanilla.com/showcase/docs/...) Enjoy!

            8 Replies
            1. re: Pigeage

              Update: Mitsua Market closed (downtown L.A.) and the other locations don't carry it. :-(

              1. re: Pigeage

                I could be wrong, but I believe I've seen this frozen product at places like 99 Ranch and Hawaii Supermarket. Don't recall if it was in a flat plastic-type bag, or was in a plastic container. Did you get a chance to check out these types of places' freezer sections?

                1. re: bulavinaka

                  No one mentioned canned coconut milk or cream. The advantage of course would be it's always on hand, the disadvantage would be the freshness and possible taste difference. There are so many brands any one of which may be close to the taste that you are looking for. Most if not all restaurants and recipes use canned? Unless I'm making curried crabs, I always use canned.

                  1. re: bulavinaka

                    I've gotten fresh-grated frozen coconut from Asian grocers. Have yet to tinker with it but the idea is to use that to press coconut milk from I think. Toying with idea of doing that using fresh coconut juice instead of water.

                    Wondering if blendering and sieving is an option.

                    1. re: Cinnamon

                      In the days before coconut milk was readily available in cans I made it from fresh coconut. My simple method was to chunk the meat, add warm water and blend- then squeeze/sieve. Based on that, yes I think using the frozen grated stuff with the same method would work. Depending on how fine the coconut is you could just steep and extract. I would use squeeze cloth and a good squeeze of the meat.

                      1. re: torty

                        Thank you. I recently made panang curry sauce from fresh ingredients. Some day when I really get my act together, I will try this on the same day!!

                2. re: Pigeage

                  >>Not one of the responses below was right<<

                  Uh, yeah - I was right... Just as I mentioned, it was in the frozen section of 99 Ranch and Hawaii Supermarket, in flat plastic- type bags. I'm surprised that this type of product is carried by Mitsuwa - Japanese typically don't use much coconut and many find the taste of coconut to be out of their flavor range - just too heady for most. Whatever the case, for your future ingredient expeditions, I would consider trying the "Chinese" markets first - they offer food products of all kinds that cover just about all Asian ethnicities east of South Asia.

                  1. re: Pigeage

                    I regularly get frozen coconut milk from both Bangkok Market on Melrose and Silom market on Hollywood Blvd. I think the frozen stuff tastes better than the canned, but it is easier to get the coconut cream from the top of the cans. Once I did the whole "crack open the coconut, grate it, steep it, and squeeze the hell out of it" thing, and it really was delicious, but I have carpal tunnel and it really did a number on my hands. I agree with the OP that is would be really nice to have fresh stuff available.

                  2. yeah, i know they used to carry it at marukai in gardena (it was frozen hawaiian sun brand).

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: alkylyou

                      I was at Marukai today in Costa Mesa and they had it, as well as frozen at Wholesome Choice in Anaheim.

                    2. LAX-C Market (outskirts of Chinatown).

                      1. Rawesome Foods, Hours: Wed 12-8 and Sat 9-4, 665 Rose Ave, Venice
                        310-452-2244 or 310-864-5830

                        They make fresh coconut milk every Wednesday. By Saturday they usually still have some, but sometimes they run out, so better to go Wednesday, or early on Saturday.

                        Be aware that Rawesome is a private food club--you will have to pay $1 to get in on a 1-day pass to check it out. (They aparently have to do this because they sell some raw dairy products that cannot legally be sold unless it is a private membership.)

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: sablouwho

                          Pretty hippie-dippy in there - just a heads-up for those who might be expecting more of a Whole Foods-Venice type of place.

                          1. re: bulavinaka

                            You win the Understatement of the Year award. But once you get past the hippy-dippy factor it's actually pretty cool as long as you stick to things that are not available elsewhere.

                            1. re: Das Ubergeek

                              Really nice folks there - feels like I time-warped back about 25-35 years and landed in some commune outside of Santa Cruz.

                        2. Anybody else with recommendations on where to get fresh (ideally) or frozen coconut milk?

                          12 Replies
                          1. re: sushigirlie

                            Rawsome on Rose in Venice has a guy who uses a stainless steel coconut scraper and grinds the coconuts fresh for their twice-weekly coop openings.

                            http://www.sgfabs.net/food-processing...

                            Coconut milk is used widely as a sub for dairy milk - it wouldn't surprise me if a place like Rawsome offered it for this purpose as well. Unfortunately, I don't know their number, and I'm not even sure they give it out unless you're a coop member. They're open on Wednesdays and Saturdays...

                            1. re: bulavinaka

                              I'm going to have to check out Rawsome. Thanks.

                              1. re: sushigirlie

                                If you look upthread, you can see where I posted the information for Rawesome--their address, hours that they are open, etc. Please note that they no longer sell day passes so in order to shop there you would have to buy a membership or know someone who has one that is willing to shop for you. Membership is pro-rated each month--renewals are in January and it costs $40/year. HTH

                              2. re: bulavinaka

                                Pretty easy to make your own. (1) Open a coconut and break it in half (the liquid inside the coconut, called coconut water, is also good --so save it if you can); (2) either grate the meat if you have a coconut grater (in Guam called a "kamyu"), which is unlikely, or pry the meat out of the shell and pulse it in a food processor until it is in teeny little shreds; (3) put the shredded coconut in a colander over a bowl and pour boiling water over it -- then, when it cools a little, squeeze it until you extract as much moisture as you can. The liquid in the bowl will separate. The part on top is coconut cream; the part on the bottom is coconut milk. Skim the cream off. Then repeat the boiling water step another cup or so of water, to extract the last remaining milk from the shredded coconut.

                                1. re: ozhead

                                  >>Pretty easy to make your own.<<

                                  I think that's a pretty subjective statement. I'm familiar with the process, but I personally wouldn't call it easy. Finding fresh coconuts is much much easier now, but you still have to crack them open (this takes practice), pry out the meat (this takes even more practice), and have a pretty sturdy blender/processor.

                                  1. re: bulavinaka

                                    Yeah. Just opening a coconut is an ordeal for me. I do love the coconut water though.

                                    1. re: sushigirlie

                                      Opening a coconut is actually pretty easy. You hold it in one hand with the "eyes" at the top, then strike it sharply at its equator with something relatively heavy (I use the back of a Chinese cleaver; the back of a large chef's knife would work, or a hammer). You are not trying to break it, so you don't have to pound on it. Turn it 1/4 of the way around and strike it again. Turn it another 1/4 turn and strike it again. At the third or 4th hit it should crack open,, more or less around the equator -- if not, keep turning and striking it until it does. If you want to save the liquid inside, i.e., the coconut water, you should do all this over a big bowl. Once it cracks open, you can pull the halves apart and use the tip of a knife to start prying out pieces of the meat. Or, if you are really serious about this, you can buy yourself a coconut grater:

                                      http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=h...

                                    2. re: bulavinaka

                                      You can do this with frozen coconut meat in a pinch. Still way better than the canned stuff.

                                      1. re: bulavinaka

                                        Flash back to my 20s when I wanted to make fresh pina coladas served in fresh coconuts shells for 20 and started with ten fresh coconuts. It took me something like six hours to prepare the cups and milk. Later I saw the cups for like $1 each at Cost Plus.

                                        Coconut milk isn't hard to make but opening the shells is a PITA

                                    3. re: bulavinaka

                                      I'm now a Rawesome member. They had coconut cream, not coconut milk (but many sources say you can make coconut milk, or a close substitute, by diluting the cream with water). The cream tasted fresh and very rich, but I felt like it had an off taste to it. A reviewer on Yelp says it has cacao butter added to it, which strikes me as possible. Does anybody know whether that's actually the case?

                                      1. re: sushigirlie

                                        I wouldn't know about the possible addition of cacao butter, but you could ask for (I think his name is) Marco - rasta-looking guy - who does all the coconuts usually the day prior to the the market days.

                                  2. Erewhon in hollywood has started making their own fresh juices and nutmilks. They make a good coconut milk.