Monday, 7 July 2014

How do you milk an almond?

I've been playing in my kitchen this weekend, trying out some new dishes that might make my life with the OMS diet a bit simpler, without losing the pleasure of good food. I'd love to say that all my creations were gourmet masterpieces, but the only real stand-out success was my almond milk.
When offered a latte made with fresh almond milk, the OH thought it was hilarious that I was just popping into the kitchen to milk an almond.

He knows, of course, as I'm sure you do, that almond milk is simply a tasty alternative to dairy that is mostly almonds and water. You can buy it in most supermarkets these days, and I consider it healthier than soya milk and creamier than rice milk.

But I've been trying to make my own that doesn't have added fats. The organic brand I've been buying did list "cold-pressed sunflower oil" in its short list of recognisable ingredients, making it preferable to the brands with all sorts of "industrial" substances in. The trouble is, these lists don't tell you what they've actually done to the ingredients, so it's difficult to know whether the oils have been cooked. (For a full explanation of the dangers of heat-treated (cooked) oils, check out the OMS book or website). The stuff in cartons is also quite expensive.

Yesterday, I think I finally cracked it. So, and I hope I haven't bigged it up too much, here is my recipe for the yummiest, purest almond milk I've tasted so far ....

Almond milk (makes 660ml, approx. 3g sat fat total)

  • 75g whole almonds (brown skin on)
  • filtered water
  • several grinds of sea salt
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground vanilla (or 1cm vanilla pod or 6-8 drops vanilla extract). Use more for a sweeter flavour.
  • 4-6 drops almond extract

Soak almonds overnight / 8-12 hours in enough filtered water to cover.
Put almonds in a blender with 800ml filtered water, salt, vanilla, and almond extract, and blitz until the "bits" are very small.
Pour mixture through a fine sieve - here you could use nutmilk bags if you have them, but my fine metal sieve seems to work just fine. Allow the milk sufficient time to strain. Relax, hum a tune - you know what comes to those who wait, don't you?

If you're catering for picky eaters you may want to repeat this straining process to get every last particle out. I didn't bother, and I thought it was yummy anyway - it's a bit like finding the odd stray coffee ground in the bottom of your cup.

Pour the strained almond milk into glass bottles and store in the fridge, if you can bear to not drink it straight away! I've designed my recipe to make 660ml because I happen to have 2 dark glass 330ml bottles (that once had Purdey's in). 

As always, you can experiment with the flavours. I found this didn't need anything to sweeten it, but for a sweet tooth you can add more vanilla. I was surprised to discover this was good in tea as well as on its own. It would also be great in smoothies, but mine didn't last that long! 

No comments:

Post a Comment