September 17, 2009
I can’t start my day without my morning fruit smoothie. I’ve never been a milk drinker because of the lactose, and I’m not a fan of soy milk. That leaves a bunch of great nut milks to choose my smoothie base from, and my favorite is Almond Breeze Unsweetened Vanilla. I add a splash of juice to it, plus frozen berries, vitamin powder, coconut oil and flax seeds. Whiz it all up in my pink Kitchenaid blender, and away I go to work with all kinds of nutrients zipping around in my bloodstream.
So, I go through a lot of almond milk, and it’s not terribly expensive but if I make it at home, I can choose the ingredients that go into it and save a little money too. How difficult is it? Not difficult at all, in fact, it’s pretty darn easy:
- Buy raw almonds from the bulk section of your local store.
- Soak a cup of them in water for 8 hours, or less if you don’t have that long. I think the milk is creamier with longer soaking.
- Rinse and drain the soaked almonds.
- Blend them with 4 cups of water.
- Drain the pulp out. I use a couple of coffee filters in a strainer over a tall bowl.
- Add flavorings and sweetener as desired: vanilla extract, cinnamon, maple syrup, agave nectar, honey, or anything else.
- Chill and enjoy within 3 or 4 days.
Voila! That’s all there is to it! You could use macadamia nuts or cashews instead of almonds. I don’t know if you could use pecans or walnuts successfully, but it’s an intriguing idea. I like to add the flavorings after I strain the pulp out so that I can use the pulp in a savory way if I choose. Adding lemon, olive oil, garlic, salt and dill to it makes an awesome spread for crackers.
Remember this milk is dairy-free, but it’s not just for vegans. It’s great for anyone who is allergic to milk or lactose-intolerant, or who just wants a healthy tasty beverage.
If you’d like to see photos of the process or learn more, go check out Gina’s awesome blog at Choosing Raw. That’s where I learned to do it, and I’m glad I did!