When I moved to China, I knew one of the more materialistic things I would miss would be milk. I love America’s milk. It’s so full of flavor and rich. China milk just disappoints. Well, it disappoints me anyway. So, I only used it sparingly in my coffee for the past 3.5 years. But recently I discovered ALMOND MILK. Let me tell you, it has changed my life!
My friend and I had almost finished Whole30, it’s a 30-day cleanse if you will. We were discussing our new found love of almonds. And of course we asked, “Can you milk an almond?” You can, folks! Here’s how it’s done!
• 1 cup raw or not raw almonds, soaked in water. I usually do 8-12 hours. But you can do as little as 2 hours. Or so I’ve heard.
• 3 cups filtered water
• 1 Tbsp of honey/syrup OR any old sweetener. I prefer honey.
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• 1/4 tsp cinnamon. This is optional. I like it though.
• small pinch of fine grain sea salt, to enhance the flavor. I don’t usually do this because the almonds I buy are a little salty.
I buy almonds at the store when I can.
But if I’m just hanging around campus, I’ll just buy this at a little shop.
Before we get started, here is a photo of raw and cooked almonds. The raw ones are on the left and cooked on the right. I have tried both. I like cooked better because it just has more flavor than raw almonds. Raw almonds are smaller and darker in color.
Like I said the almonds are slightly salty, I kind of rinse them off and then let me soak up the water! I usually do 8-12 hours or overnight. I have yet to try just 2 hours. But Angela Liddon, writer of Oh She Glows Cookbook, says it can be done! This is her recipe with a couple of tweaks.
Put rinsed almonds, water, sweetener and vanilla in your blender.
Then blend, baby, blend! For about a minute.
I usually get my dish towel and pitcher ready. I put a photo of the brand and towel. This is what I used when anything says, use cheesecloth. I have yet to find cheesecloth in China, but these little towels do the trick.
Place the towel over your pitcher, like so.
Pour the almond milk slowly in to the towel. It will begin to drip through the towel.
Eventually, you can pull the towel up and squeeze the rest of the milk out. This usually takes 4-5 minutes. I usually pour about half and squeeze, remove pulp, pour the other half, squeeze and then remove the rest of the pulp. Speaking of pulp…
When you open the towel, you have almond pulp. But there are all sorts of stuff to do with the pulp. Crackers, hummus, add to granola, pizza crust, or really any baked good.
I usually put the pulp in a bowl and set it aside.
You’re almost done!!!
Rinse out your blender and then pour all the milk back in. Add the cinnamon and salt if you wish. Blend on low, just enough to combine it all up.
Viola! You have made Vanilla Cinnamon Almond Milk!
Pour the milk in to a glass container and it can be stored for up to 5 days. Shake well before each use because the almonds and water tend to separate.
I hope you fall in love with Almond Milk like I did. Feel free to play with the recipe. Another friend suggested chocolate. I might try adding some cocoa powder sometime. Or maybe you want to keep it simple and just add vanilla. Or you don’t want it sweet. Or you want it sweeter. Do whatever you like.