Recently while talking to a friend in Sydney, she mentioned that they have given up diary products completely. She told me that they now only consume store bought Almond milk. She has done some research on this and told me to only buy Carrageenan free brands, which also has fewer additives and sugar. Intrigued, we began doing our own research on Almond Milk. There were some brands here in the US which met the purpose, but still it was not completely free of sugar, additives and preservatives. Lot of articles that I read online had only one thing to say by the end – If you not happy with the ones you get in the stores, make them at home yourself. Making it at home is the easiest and simplest way to obtain nutritious and delicious milk!
Almond milk surely has its share of benefits. It is a fantastic alternative for those who are allergic to dairy or soy. This cholesterol free, low in calorie milk helps you keep your weight in check, contributes to a glowing skin while keeping you healthy.
While it is a popular alternative, I realized that it doesn’t contain as much protein as cows milk. So weight watchers can add protein powder to a glass of almond milk to make it your go to health drink. Since I decided to give it a try, I wanted to make it mildly flavored. Many recipes that I saw online asked for dates and cinnamon powder to be added to give it a flavor.
Organic Almonds are preferred, however you can use the regular ones as well.
Soak almonds in warm filtered water with salt for at-least 12 hours or overnight.
After being soaked for so many hours, the skin will peel of easily. You can choose to keep the skin on while grinding them or discard it. This being my first attempt, I discarded the skin. Will surely keep the skin on next time I make this milk.
In a blender, add the almonds, honey and vanilla essence. Add 2 cups of water for every cup of almonds you blend. You may need to do this in batches depending upon your blender size.
Blend it for a good 2-3 minutes on high. You will see a frothy milky texture. It will smell heavenly due to the vanilla in it. Strain the milk. Do not throw away the pulp. It can be reused in many recipes. Here is what I made – Hummus from Almond Pulp
I decided to blend the pulp with some water once again as I wanted skim milk. If you want the milk to be thick, then you can stop here. I added the pulp along with 4 more cups of water and blended it again. I then added this to the previously strained milk. This yielded 2 big bowls of almond milk. Sufficient to take us through the week.
This milk can be stored in the fridge for nearly a week. Its best when served chilled. You can use this in smoothies, with oats, cornflakes or just drink it as it is. Am loving it! It’s creamy, tasty and healthy! Enjoy it guilt-free!
You can freeze the milk in ice cube trays for later use.
You can avoid straining the milk if you like the grainy texture
Buy almonds in bulk to make it cost effective
You can make it plain, adding no flavor to it as well
Freeze the almond pulp for future use as an option