Coconut milk comes from the white flesh of mature brown coconuts, which are the fruit of the coconut tree. The milk has a thick consistency and a rich, creamy texture. Thai and other Southeast Asian cuisines commonly include this milk. It's also popular in Hawaii, India and certain South American and Caribbean countries. Coconut milk should not be confused with coconut water, which is found naturally in immature green coconuts. Unlike coconut water, the milk does not occur naturally in liquid form. The solid flesh is mixed with water to make coconut milk, which is about 50% water.By contrast, coconut water is about 94% water. It contains much less fat and fewer nutrients than coconut milk.
Coconut milk is classified as either thick or thin, based on consistency and how much it's processed.
Thick: Solid coconut flesh is finely grated and either boiled or simmered in water. The mixture is then strained through cheesecloth to produce thick coconut milk. Thin: After making thick coconut milk, the grated coconut remaining in the cheesecloth is simmered in water. The straining process is then repeated to produce thin milk. In traditional cuisines, thick coconut milk is used in desserts and thick sauces. Thin milk is used in soups and thin sauces.