Hey Hi Hello!
So, I finished moving into my new home this week…
… and I decided to christen my new kitchen with a simple recipe that I’ve made before and was eager to make again: vanilla almond milk.
When I moved, one of the first few things I grabbed from my parents’ house were my 2 containers of raw almonds. When I bought almonds to make almond milk the first time around I apparently got a little overzealous and bought much more than what I needed. The upside is that I have enough almonds to make multiple batches of fresh almond milk whenever I want.
Yay for providential messups!
You guys, moving is hard. I spent a full weekend unpacking and finding places to put things and at the end of it all the only thing I wanted was good food but I hadn’t even gone grocery shopping yet. I also didn’t feel like cooking.
This recipe is perfect for any situation that mimmicks mine this past weekend: you want something tasty but don’t have much spare time and/or energy to make it. It is so simple to make and takes 2 to 4 ingredients (depending on your preference).
I don’t drink much milk at all, but I can easily down a glass of this almond milk if I’m craving something fresh to drink. Even so, I make small batches of it because it stays fresh for about a week in the refrigerator and it’s so easy to prepare when you need more. For those reasons my recipe is for a small batch (about 6 cups) so if you want more or anticipate using it for cooking and drinking I’d say to multiply the recipe by however much you feel is needed.
Fresh Vanilla Almond Milk
5 cups water
2 cups raw almonds (be sure to find raw and not roasted or salted)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp sugar or sweetener of choice (optional)
Dash salt (optional)
Cheesecloth or Nut Milk Bag (I’m not even making this up; just google it)
Start by putting your almonds in a bowl and filling it with enough water to cover the top. Let them sit for 24 hours to soak up the water, softening them and releasing bitter tannins that would make your milk taste acidic and dry.
Sidenote: I’ve linked to an article about tannins for your information. It is an article about how tannins affect wines but the premise can be applied to many foods.
The next day drain your almonds and rinse them with a quick, fresh water bath.
Drop your almonds into the blender along with the 5 cups of water, vanilla extract, salt, and sugar.
Blend baby blend!
I pulsed my blender on low for a few seconds to get the almonds coarsely chopped then dialed it up from medium to high and blended for 7 to 10 seconds, until they were blended into a fine meal. There is no set method for this step. Just blend until your almonds are as fine as they can get- this won’t take long with a powerful blender.
Next, wet your cheesecloth with water so it doesn’t absorb the almond milk itself, then lay it over a bowl. Pour the almond milk, meal and all, over the cheesecloth to strain. With clean hands (you know – the whole cleanliness/godliness thing) wrap whatever is remaining into the cheesecloth and give it a good squeeze to strain every last drop of deliciousness you can get.
Pour your almond milk into your jar of choice and enjoy on cereal, in oatmeal, or in your favorite recipe!
A Few Tips
A few almonds goes a long way, but taste is king. If you prefer a thicker or thinner almond milk (a la whole milk vs 2 percent) add or remove half a cup or so of almonds to the recipe to thicken or thin it to taste.
If using cheesecloth to strain your milk, layer it once or twice to be sure you strain as much of the almond meal out as possible.
Your “powerful blender” doesn’t necessarily have to be a state-of-the-art, car-motor-powered, grind-up-the-bones-of-your-enemies type of blender. The first time I made fresh almond milk it was in a rinky dink blender my parents have had for over 10 years and it worked perfectly fine.
When you’re done straining your almond milk don’t throw away the almond meal! It can be dried and used in numerous recipes to add healthy fiber and other nutrients to your diet.
If you make this recipe let me know how it turns out!
xx Court xx