10.23.2013

Homemade Almond Milk


For the second day in a row, I'm home sick. I actually got up this morning, took a shower, made my lunch and went in the office. Within the hour, my boss sent me home. I agreed. What was I thinking anyway? 

Sure, I like being off work, but not when I actually don't feel good. I'm not a great sick person. I don't like medicine, I hate not being able to work out and I tend to get bored at home pretty quickly. Yesterday, I dragged out all of our files, threw a bunch of old stuff away and proceeded to relabeled and reorganize everything. 

Now, here I am. Sitting at home, again, watching The Walking Dead. I think I only have a few episodes left, so I am sure I'll try and keep busy in the kitchen next. I made a batch of this almond milk on Monday evening, so I should just go ahead and bake up some pumpkin granola to go along with it. 



See, I've never been a big fan of regular milk. Even as a kid, I only had in my cereal, nothing else. My sister would drink a glass every night at dinner - ugh, yeah, makes a squirm a little. And I tend to get a tummy ache if I eat too much dairy, so I rarely bought milk when I moved out on my own. Once I started baking and cooking more, more things called for milk so I wanted to find an alternative. I started to try all sorts of non-dairy drinks to see if they were any better. My favorite has been almond milk.

But course, I read a lot food things, and as I started reading more and more about what additives are put into almond milk you buy in the grocery stores, I started researching ways I could make my own. I went a long time before jumping in and making it myself. One day one of my co-workers actually explained how easy it was to make at home so I figured I'd try it out. She was right! It tastes sooo much better too. It doesn't last nearly as long, about 4 days, but I make it in small batches so its usually gone by then any way. 


Start with some good quality, raw almonds. I usually get my on sale in the bulk bins. Soak them overnight or up to 24 hours. The longer you soak, the creamer and thicker your milk will become. 


Rinse your almonds and add them to a blender with some fresh filtered water. At this point, you can add in any flavors you might like. Some people add vanilla, honey, agave, or any other spices that might taste good. 


Blend and strain using cheese cloth, a fine mesh sieve or a handy nut milk bag


Store in a jar or container in the fridge for up to 4 days. You will have a good amount of almond meal left over. You can bake with it, toss it is cakes, or smoothies, or freeze it for a later. That will last a few days in the fridge as well. I've made cookies and muffins so far with mine - but that's for another (hopefully not a sick) day.


Homemade Almond Milk
Makes about 4 cups
2 cups raw almonds
2 pitted, dried dates
4 cups filtered water

Add the raw almonds and dates to a jar or container. Cover with water (about double over the amount of almonds) and let them soak over night or up to 24 hours. Drain and rinse the almond and add them to a blender with 4 cups of filtered water. Blend until mostly smooth. Strain the milk using cheese cloth, a fine mesh sieve or a nut milk bag. Store in a clean jar or container in the fridge for up to 4 days. 



Enjoy and cheers,

Erica

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