Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Almond Milk and Almond Meal.

I've always wanted to make my own almond milk and today I finally did it! I found a recipe in Cherie Calbom's famous smoothie book for almond milk, so I decided to give it a try. My mom loves to use this book often for smoothie ideas, and I highly recommend it! This almond milk is not anything like the storebought version. It actually tastes like fresh almonds, and has a natural thickness to it. Since it doesn't have preservatives, it has no funny taste, doesn't last forever in the fridge. So drink up :) Use it in smoothies, homemade hot cocoa, tea, and as liquid in baked recipes.

Homemade Almond Milk.
    adapted from Cherie Calbom
    makes about 4 cups

    2 cups  organic raw almonds
    2 1/2 cups  water
    1/4 cup  organic maple syrup
    2 tsp  almond extract - source
    1 tsp  vanilla extract - source
    1 tsp  unrefined sea salt

To make your almond milk:
  1. Place the almonds and the water in a bowl to soak overnight.
  2. The next day place them in a food processor (with the water) and grind until smooth.
  3. Add the other liquid ingredients. Blend some more. The mixture will not be totally smooth; it will be a liquidy almond meal consistency.
  4. Next take a cheesecloth (I found mine at Bed Bath and Beyond) and scoop some almond mixture into it.
  5. With clean hands, squeeze into a wide mouth bowl. Repeat until all the almond mixture has been squeezed out.
  6. Place in a glass jar and refrigerate. Use for making smoothies, oatmeal, your favorite recipes or drinking plain. Use within 7 days. Enjoy!

After straining out the liquid almond milk, the leftovers make wet almond meal/flour! I spread mine out on a cookie sheet with parchment paper to air dry. Then I put it in a oven that was still a little warm after I had baked something. After it was in the oven for an hour or so, I placed it into a plastic container for storage. You can also freeze it for later use! I've used my leftover almond meal in cookies, brownies, and banana bread. Yum!

PS. Make sure you use THIS kind of cheesecloth; all others I've tried are inferior and DO NOT separate solid from liquid since the holes are too big! I once bought a similar "natural cheesecloth" at Whole Foods while on vacation and it was a big mistake. I couldn't make almond milk at all!

1 comment:

Lauren said...

The almond milk looks great! What a great way to save money. Bet it tastes wonderfully fresh! :)