I’m no health nut, and I’m definitely not a vegan, but I love soya, almond, coconut and rice milk. I recently bought Jillian Michaels’ excellent Master Your Metabolism Cookbook, and she asks you to replace your diary with other products – specifically not soy, for various reasons. So, I purchased a litre of coconut milk and one of almond milk (and then had to carry them home four miles from the shop, but that’s a whole other story!) and discovered how delicious almond milk was in porridge and banana smoothies. I’d never had it before, and realised precisely why this was when I got to the health food shop – firstly, it’s quite hard to find (only in health food shops and Waitrose, it seems!) and secondly, it’s a whopping £3.00 a litre… Now, I don’t know about you, but that’s quite a lot for me, so I was pretty pleased to discover that it’s really easy to make your own almond milk at home! I’m not saying it tastes better than shop bought – I think the shop bought stuff is sweeter, but at home it gets a bit worrying to continually add honey to your mix, so I stopped after three teaspoons! However, it’s definitely cheaper, as once you’ve bought yourself a nut milk bag, you end up paying about £1.60 or so for every litre – basically, the cost of your almonds.
So, the recipe!
Nut milk bag (buy these on eBay if you find them hard to track down)
Water, to cover
1 litre water, to make milk (4 cups)
Vanilla extract, optional
Honey or other natural sweetner, optional
Cover your almonds with water (I like to rinse mine first as well) and leave to stand overnight, for at least 8 hours, and up to 12.
Drain away the soaking water (I rinse here again) and add the nuts to a blender.
Pour in your four cups / 1 litre water, then blend well. Add in the vanilla extract and sweetner to taste, if using.
Pour the mixture into a nut bag over a bowl or wide jug, and strain. You’ll have to help the process along by squeezing the bag to get the excess moisture out.
Your nut milk is ready! Keep in the fridge, covered, for up to four days.
The leftover almond meal is great for adding fibre to porridge, cereal, etc!