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Making your own nut / seed / almond / rice milk is a great way to keep healthy and avoid the costs of store-bought versions. While some people are under the impression that a diy version is time-consuming and would require expensive equipment, the truth is that any old blender or food processor does the trick. What’s more, homemade nut milks are fresher and more nutritious. When soaked, nuts (especially almonds and walnuts) provide increased enzyme activity–resulting in better digestion and absorption of nutrients. Soaking nuts before use in recipes such as nut milk will initiate the sprouting process, after which nutrients and beneficial enzymes are readably available. Your gut, your taste buds, and your wallet will be all the more satisfied when you make the switch from store-bought to diy.
As for time, that depends on the level of expertise you are looking to achieve. Basically, you can make a simple and delicious nut milk from pre-soaked nuts in under 30 minutes! However, the quality and consistency of your product will improve with practice and persistence.
You will need:
1 cup raw almonds or your nut of choice
5 1/2 cups filtered water (2 for soaking the nuts, 3 1/2 for blending)
3 Mejool or 4 Delget Noor pitted dates OR 1 tsp maple syrup OR 2 stevia packets OR 1/2 tsp pure liquid stevia OR 1/8 tsp pure steviosides (optional, to taste)
3 pieces vanilla bean, thinly sliced crosswise OR 1 tsp vanilla extract OR 2 tsp vanilla bean paste (optional)
1 blender or food processor
1 strainer (sieve or colander)
3-4 pieces of cheesecloth
Soak the nuts overnight or for at least 8 hours. Place the nuts in a measuring cup or other container and make sure they are completely submerged. Add the 2 cups of filtered water, and let sit for at least 8 hours but no longer than 24.
Drain the nuts and place in the blender with the other ingredients.
Blend or puree at a high speed for approximately three minutes or until the mixture appears to have reached a smooth consistency.
Remove any excess you find around the inner perimeter of the blender/food processor. If you desire a thicker nut milk, add 1-2 cups water (adjusted according to preference).
Line your strainer / sieve / colander with the 3-4 pieces of cheesecloth (in layers).
Carefully pour the nut milk mixture from the blender pitcher into a clean measuring cup. Wait patiently as the liquid filters into the measuring cup.
*Note: You may need to periodically remove the nut pulp from the strainer to allow for all of the liquid to filter into the measuring cup.
After all of the liquid appears to have filtered into the measuring cup, proceed to lift up the edges of the cheesecloth and twist them together starting at the top, allowing for any remaining liquid to be squeezed out.
It is optional but recommended to save the nut pulp for use in recipes that call for a “meaty” or chunky texture. Nut burgers, vegetarian meat loaf, and homemade falafel are examples.
Pour the nut milk into a jar or other clean receptacle and refrigerate immediately, or enjoy the fruits of your effort right away!
You may expect to discover a considerable amount of separation the following day. Should this be the case, simply shake the jar or stir its contents. Note that fresh/homemade nut milk will not last as long as store-bought. Refrigerate and consume witin 1-2 days.
Enjoy in any recipe that calls for soy, hemp, rice, coconut or dairy milk. 🙂
Making Rice Milk
Making rice milk is similar. In place of the first and second step, you need to either cook the rice or soak it overnight. Steps 3-8 are the same. Wash the rice before use.
Making Oat Milk
For oat milk, steps 1 and 2 are the same as for rice milk.
Making Peanut Milk
For peanut milk, I use natural peanut butter (the kind you grind yourself at Whole Foods Market or other natural food stores and/or in the natural foods aisle of Raleys, etc.)
Making Seed Milks
For variety, try using hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, or sesame seeds. If you are budget-conscious, sunflower seeds are the most cost-effective option. Rich in linoleic acid (an essential fatty acid) and amino acids such as tryptophan, sunflower seeds are also a great source of vitamin E and B vitamins–all of which are good for the brain.
Hemp seeds are considered a superfood, meaning that they contain a full spectrum of essential amino acids and essential fatty acids. While not as economical as sunflower seeds, hemp seeds might be one of those things that are worth the “splurge”. Another option is to use sunflower seeds as a base and add a modest amount of hemp seeds, or replace 1/2 the sunflower seeds with an equal amount of hemp seeds.
For seed milks, follow the nut milk recipe – but only soak the seeds for 8 to 12 hours, as the sprouting process is quicker for seeds.
Will These Recipes Save Money?
They have the potential to save money – but it depends to an extent on how thick and creamy you like the milks i.e. how much water you add. Hazelnuts are expensive and your savings there may be small – but rice milk should save some money!
Article created by Kelsey Wambold of www.paleoveganista.com
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