Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Coconut Whipped Cream: A Variation on an Old Theme

After eating about seven scones and nearly a quart of chik'n noodle soup yesterday, I was feeling pretty guilty when I woke up this morning. Today would require modesty and balance, I decided. The day had been going pretty well, and making fruit salad for dinner made me feel like a good little vegan. But then my demon sweet tooth kicked in and said, "How about a little whipped cream on that salad?" I think it goes without saying that whipped cream is to fruit salad what Ranch is to vegetable salad.

However, I had recently read about Vegan Dad using coconut cream as, essentially, whipped cream. I'm pretty sure he's not the first vegan to do this, but actually looking at it on some of his delicious treats, I thought, "What an inspired idea!" When I was grocery shopping Sunday night, I bought a can of coconut milk for this express purpose, and since coconuts are pretty good for you in moderation, I reasoned it was okay to include them in my fruit salad.

Also in the "international" aisle Sunday night, I noticed a German product called Whip It, which advertised itself as a stabilizer for whipped cream. At the time, I thought of using it for custard-y/mousse-y type things, but when I sat down to make my whipped cream tonight, it occurred to me that perhaps this would help it achieve a texture closer to the one I remember. Having also purchased some rose water in the international aisle (seriously, best spot in the grocery store, especially if you're vegan), I decided to make a vanilla version and a rose water version. They were both successful (not that I had many doubts), and I will definitely be using Whip It in other confections.

+ 1 can coconut milk
+ 4 tbsp confectioner's sugar
+ 1 packet of Whip It
+ 1+ tsp flavor of your fancy

01. Keep the coconut milk in the fridge until you're ready to use it. When it's time, the water and cream will have separated, and you can just scoop the cream off the top. Put that in a bowl, and add to it the confectioner's sugar, Whip It, and flavoring.

02. According to the Whip It packet, it needs some vigorous action to get it going, so stir with enthusiasm to combine these ingredients. I did mine for a minute or two, but you can go however long you need to, hot shot. After all, the longer you go, the more beautiful your xveganx muscles will be.

03. Serve immediately or return to the fridge so the whipped cream can set. To illustrate my point, the first picture in this entry immediately followed making the whipped cream, but after about an hour in the fridge, I ran a fork through my cream and it left a fork print. Texturally, I preferred the latter, but it doesn't make a big difference either way. Enjoy!

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