Here is another recipe I can check off my bucket list. Continuing along with my almond theme, I decided to make almond milk. I’ve always heard how easy it is, and after reading a much longer than expected ingredient list on my store-bought milk, I gave it a try. It’s a long process, as it involves soaking the almonds in water for 8-24 hours and then straining them through a cheesecloth or nut milk bag (yes, they have special bags for this). But overall, it is only about 10 minutes of active work. Trying to squeeze all the liquid out of the almonds is pretty hard work, so it is definitely active! My forearms were a bit tired by the end…
I was pleasantly surprised by how much almond milk it produced; 3 cups of almonds made 6 cups of almond milk! My version tasted much creamier than the Silk brand that I buy. It was slightly foamy from the blender and had much more flavor—you could really taste the almonds in it. Mine was unsweetened, but I’ve read a few recipes that use cinnamon, vanilla, or dates as additions that I will try in the future. Between the success of almond butter and the milk this week, I am going to need to start buying bulk quantities of almonds.
I made a mint chocolate chip smoothie with the almond milk this morning. Extra creamy, extra thick!
I picked up the instructions for almond milk at my local health food store, but most health blogs and cookbooks have recipes as well and all are pretty similar. I would recommend buying a nut milk bag if you can find one. They are reusable and mine was only $7. They don’t stretch and strain the almond pulp very finely.
3 cups raw, organic almonds
6 cups water
*I would actually recommend halving the recipe or doing it in two separate batches. 6 cups of almond milk is a lot to work with at once!
Soak almonds and water in a container at room temperature for 24 hours (this is what I did, but usually just overnight is sufficient). Drain and rinse the almonds, then place half of them (or all of them if you halved the recipe) in a blender with 3 cups of water. Blend on high for 1-2 minutes. Pour the mixture through a nut milk bag, fine strainer, or cheesecloth. Use your fingers to press the blended almond mixture and remove as much liquid as possible.
A by-product of making almond milk is lots of nut pulp. Don’t throw it away! You can make crackers, cookies, truffles, ice cream topping, or even cheesecake with it. Check back soon to see what I did with mine.