If you’re vegan, health conscious, or have a milk-related allergy (for me it’s whey instead of lactose, I’m weird like that) you probably drink a fair amount of soy, almond, coconut, or other type of non-cow milk. At roughly $2-$6 per carton, buying non-dairy milk can be a pricy habit, especially if you’re like me and enjoy daily lattes. However, if you have a blender or food processor you can make your almond (or other nut) milk for cheaper, and it tastes better, too!
I was recently over my friend S.B.’s house and asked him if he had something I could put in my coffee. “I’ll make you some fresh almond milk!” he proclaimed like the culinary rock star he is. S.B. is the proud owner of one of those ridiculously expensive Vitamix blenders, which he uses to make incredible stuff like avocado hummus and homemade dark chocolate nutella. He threw a handful of almonds and some water into his Vitamix, and a few minutes later I was enjoying a fresh almond milk latte! And the stuff he made tasted a million times better than the preservative laden shit you get at the grocery store. The best part is, you don’t need a Vitamix to do this, any blender or food processor will work.
You will need:
3-4 cups of filtered water
1 tsp. of vanilla
Sweetener to taste (honey, agave, whatever)
Poly mesh or cheesecloth nut milk bag (I know, it sounds DIRRRTY), or a fine mesh strainer (you can buy a nut milk bag at Whole Foods or online for about $8-10.)
1. Soak the almonds in water overnight. (If you have an UBER BLENDER like a Vitamix, you can skip this step, but soaking the almonds also makes them easier to digest.)
2. Dump out the soak water and put the pre-soaked almonds in the blender or food processor with your water, vanilla and sweetener. (Less water is better if you have a wimpy blender or want a creamier milk. I also find using hot/warm water also helps extract the most flavor.)
3. Blend the hell out of that business.
4. Pour your blenderized mixture through a mesh strainer or bag into a big jar or pitcher, squeezing the liquid out of the pulpy remains. You can save the ground up almond pulp to put into oatmeal, smoothies or baked goods since it’s full of fiber.
*You can get a sweeter tasting almond milk by using blanched (peeled) almonds. You can do this by boiling a pot of water, then soaking your almonds for a few minutes. Dump the almonds into a colander and run cold water over them as you remove the loosened skins by hand. This process will also soften up the almonds a bit, eliminating the need for an overnight soak.
*You can experiment with adding cocoa powder, cinnamon, etc. to get a flavored milk.
Fresh almond milk is preservative free, so it has a shorter shelf life than the store-bought kind: it will last about 3-5 days in the refrigerator (toss it if it smells sour). Put it in your cereal, tea, and coffee, and you’ll have no trouble using it all while it’s fresh and delicious!