Beware of powdered coconut milk when eating out

This issue came to my attention recently when a lactose-intolerant relative was inadvertantly poisoned by eating a green curry at a Thai restaurant made with milk-laced coconut milk. Some research into the various powdered coconut milks available, revealed that every one that I’ve found has skimmed milk powder in it. This is critical when eating out, as Thai food is usually regarded as being absolutely safe.

Many Thais are lactose-intolerant, as are vast numbers of people throughout South-East Asia, and Thai food has largely evolved without dairy produce; however, powdered coconut milk is a cheap way of buying and storing a base ingredient for restaurant cooking. Unfortunately, therefore, you can no longer afford to assume that Thai curries will be safe.

ALWAYS ask about the ingredients if you are eating out. If restaurant staff cannot or will not tell you whether or not the kitchen is using powdered coconut milk, the best advice would be to choose a stir-fry…or to eat elsewhere!

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