Thursday, July 29, 2010
Making nut milks
So we will play a little guessing game to see who can figure out what type of milk is in each container. So, the choices are cashew milk, coconut milk and almond milk. I made new batches of all three this morning. Are you removing dairy from your diet or your child's diet and trying to keep strict accounting of what is going into their bodies? Do you wonder at those added ingredients, even in the good brands of nut milks? Or are you just tired of paying a lot of money for the commercially made nut milks? Maybe you just ran out and now need some in a pinch? Well if any of those sound like you, then you need these recipes. They are super easy, I made all 3 milks while my kids played upstairs before school, it took me 20 minutes max to make all 3 batches (not including soaking time for the nuts).
3 cups filtered water
1 cup nuts
2 dates (in the almond milk only)
splash of vanilla (in the almond milk only)
Blend then strain with a fine strainer, except for cashew milk which does not need to be strained.
Here is the breakdown, almond milk is sweeter, especially with the dates/vanilla. Cashew milk tastes the closest to cow's milk in taste and texture. Coconut milk definitely has a sweet quality and coconut flavor. They are all great for baking, cooking, whatever you need them for. I use a thicker blend of cashew milk for an "alfredo" sauce over rice pasta. One word of advice, soak your nuts prior to using. Almond can be soaked in a glass bowl overnight with a pinch of sea salt. Cashews can be soaked in a glass bowl with a pinch of sea salt for 2 - 4 hours. Drain, rinse, add to filtered water in blender and blend away. The coconut does not have to be soaked. But, get plain, unsweetened coconut, no additives.
Viola! Fresh nut milk that you made, no additives, no preservatives, no sitting on the shelf for months. And, if you use soaked nuts you are getting even better digestibility out of the deal too! It can be an easy, cheap and convenient alternative to buying prepared nut milks. My son who used to eat dry cereal rather than have the commercial almond milks now asks for the "homemade almond milk" on his rice cereal many mornings.
So here are the answers A) Coconut milk B) Almond milk C) Cashew milk