Fresh berries and whipped cream is the epitome of summer dessert for me! With being treated to such gorgeous summer weather thus far, cooling and refreshing treats (that happen to offer many nutritional benefits) are a must!
It is incredibly easy to make a coconut whipped cream that is free of the refined sugar and artificial substances found in conventional, store-bought whipped creams. This can be accomplished by using a can of full-fat, organic coconut milk as an alternative!
I LOVE working with coconut in various forms, due to the lauric acid and caprylic acid (fatty acids called Medium-Chain Triglycerides) it contains, among a wealth of other nutritional benefits. Lauric acid and caprylic acid contribute anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-microbial and anti-viral properties to the body, helping to support the immune system and protect the body from disease-causing organisms. The saturated fat coconut contains, given it is a plant-based source, is easier to both digest and absorb than saturated fat stemming from animal food sources. Your body requires high-quality sources of fat for many reasons, including:
- Cell communication
- Brain and Central Nervous System function
- Holding our organs in place
- Protection of our organs from trauma and temperature changes (acts as protective covering/insulation)
- Transport of fat-soluble vitamins through the body (vitamins A, D, E & K)
- Energy storage in the body
Also, the presence of fat in the body frees up protein for tissue repair[i]
1. Chill the can of coconut milk in the refrigerator overnight, so that it may be chilled enough prior to whipping and consuming!
2. About 15 minutes (or more) prior to starting the whipping of the cream, chill the mixing bowl and electric beaters that you will be using to whip the milk. This allows the milk to remain at a chilled temperature so that the whipping process is not compromised in any way.
3. Upon opening the can of coconut milk, scoop out the solid milk and place it in your chilled mixing bowl, separating the solid milk from the liquid milk. Store the liquid milk in an airtight container and chill in the refrigerator; it may be used for a smoothie or other culinary creation!
*I find this coconut milk-based whipped cream to be pleasing to the taste buds on its own, when coupled with the natural sugars of the fruit it is being paired with. Some recipes include a bit of natural sweetener (such as pure maple syrup or raw, unpasteurized honey) to be added in prior to whipping. You be the judge!
4. From there, you may start to whip the milk until it is light and airy; this will not take long! Store any excess in an airtight container and chill in the refrigerator, although I’m anticipating there may not be leftovers!
[i] Haas, Elson M. (2006). Staying Healthy with Nutrition: The Complete Guide to Diet and Nutritional Medicine. New York: Random House Inc.