Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Homemade Almond Milk

It seems that homemade almond milk is popping up on many blogs, so I finally decided to jump on the bandwagon and try making it.  It is so easy, and pretty fun to make!  My husband LOVES it, and almond milk has replaced dairy milk in his daily cereal.  I bought some at the store recently, too, and may do that again, but it was artificially thickened with carrageenan and tasted a little too creamy, like whole milk... and that just tastes weird to me now!  :) 
I don't love almond milk as much as my husband, but it is fun to be able to make such a thing.  I was using cheesecloth to strain the milk, but I just ordered a Nut Bag to try out.  Also, I've been using raw almonds, like all the recipes I've seen call for, but I wonder how roasted almonds would taste.  If they would even work.  I did find a few recipes calling for roasting almonds, so I'm going to try a very small roasted-almond batch tomorrow and see how that turns out. 

Besides hot and cold cereal, we've used almond milk for a baked oatmeal dish, and I loved it in that.  I want to try a hot chocolate recipe next, and a almond milk-banana-oat smoothie.  I've been drying out and freezing the leftover almond meal, but haven't actually used it in anything yet.  I'm going to try a small batch of homemade almond paste and see if that works.  This is all very experimental!

Homemade Almond Milk
adapted from Tasty Kitchen

1 cup almonds, raw and unsalted
4 cups filtered water, cold

1. Cover and soak the raw almonds in water for at least 6 hours; then drain and rinse.

2. Pour the almonds into a blender and add the 4 cups cold filtered water.  (Use new water, not the almond-soaking water).  Blend well.  Milk will form foam on top. 

3. Take the cheesecloth, and fold to ensure it is at least 4 layers thick.  (You can use a Nut Bag or a few layers of coffee filters, too).  Put the cheesecloth on the top of the pitcher and secure it with a big elastic band.  Pour the almond mix through the cheesecloth into the pitcher.  Use a big spoon to help push the milk through the mass of almond and into the pitcher.

4.  Almond milk will be in the pitcher and you will have almond solids in your cheesecloth.  If desired, dry these out on a baking sheet for a while and use in recipes. 

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