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How to Make Almond Milk

How to Make Almond Milk

Our family normally drinks cow milk and I honestly have some reservations about the milk alternative craze.  That being said, there’s a lot wrong with the dairy industry, quality milk is expensive and hard to find and many people have difficulty digesting milk.  Our parents have been trying to reduce their dairy consumption and it inspired me to try my hand at almond milk.  I found it to be quite tasty and simple to make.  We personally still drink regular milk but enjoy this as a tasty treat and an alternative for lactose intolerant friends and family.

 How to Make Almond Milk

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup skinless almonds
  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups water

Directions:

  • Puree almonds and one cup water in blender until very smooth.
  • Add remaining 2 cups water, honey and vanilla – blend until well mixed.
  • Strain the mixture (optional) and store in the fridge.
Notes:
  • Straining – some people like the texture of unstrained almond milk.  Plus the almond pulp has nutrition value of its own.  However, if you want your almond milk to have a smooth, milky consistency, you’re gonna have to strain it.  Ideally you’d have a large, fine mesh strainer which you could put over a bowl and allow the milk to drip through.  Another option is to line a colander with cheese cloth, put that in a bowl and again let it drip.  Stirring and scraping the sides will speed the process.  Whatever you do, don’t throw away the pulp.  It’s sweet and delicious and can be eaten like a spread or even a dessert.
  • Soaking – Nuts naturally contain enzyme inhibitors.  In nature, these inhibitors prevent them from sprouting prematurely.   But in your body, they impair digestion and often cause upset stomach and other GI problems.  Fortunately there’s an easy solution – soak them first.  Soaking neutralizes inhibitors, makes the nuts easier to digest and actually increases vitamin content.  A little salt aids this process even further.  For the recipe above, mix 2 cups of water with 1-2 teaspoons of salt in a bowl or mason jar.  Once dissolved, add the almonds, cover and soak at room temperature for 8-12 hours (a little more or less won’t hurt).  Then just strain and follow the recipe above.
  • Side note – Soaking nuts is super healthy, but it makes the nuts soft and soggy.  That’s fine for pureed dishes like above, but is less appetizing if you plan to eat them whole.  Here’s a simple recipe if you want the health benefits of soaking but the satisfying crunch of a roasted nut: http://youngmotherhubbard.com/http:/1834/extra-healthy-nuts/

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mukluk/315409445/

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