Let it suffice to say that, once you know how easy it is to make, and how delicious it is to drink, you will never go back. I make almond milk every couple of days to enjoy in coffee, with cereal, or to use in some recipe or another instead of regular milk. I think its better than milk, and far better than boxed soy or almond milk.
Almond Milk’s only drawback is that you have to figure out what to do with the almond pulp after straining. Lucky for you, I have a bunch of recipe solutions for that, too.
All you need to make this delicious drink is a blender and nutmilk bag (or a paint straining bag from the hardware store). I get mine at Home Depot, about $2 for two 1-gallon size bags (be sure not to get the 5 gallon bag). It helps to soak the almonds for a few hours before you blend, but if you don’t, no big deal.
|all you need (besides a blender & almonds) to make almond milk|
Fresh Almond Milk*
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 6-8 cups filtered water
If possible, soak the almonds over night (soaking softens the nuts and switches off the enzyme inhibitors, making the almonds more nutritionally available and easy to digest…and creamier). Blend with the water for at least 30 seconds, until completely pulverized. Place the straining bag in a pitcher or bowl and pour the blended almonds and water through. Squeeze and strain (imagine you are milking an almond cow) until as much moisture is out of the pulp as possible. You now have fresh, delicious almond milk. I like mine plain, pure, and simple. But feel free to add sweetener, vanilla, a pinch of salt, or whatever floats your boat.
*For a slightly more viscous result, try adding a few tablespoons of chia seeds to the blender with the almonds. It makes it a little more difficult to strain, but the result is thicker. Also, if you want something more like a cream, use less water, or more almonds.
You should also know…this fresh almond milk lasts no longer than 2-3 days, so drink up! Or don’t make too much.
|soaked almonds, fresh almond milk, and my favorite way to enjoy: in a foamy cup of coffee|
The question is, what to do with all this pulp? I used to stick it in a ziploc bag, throw it in the freezer and forget about it. Then one day I realized that I had about 7 gallons of almond pulp. These days, I try to create some kind of baked good with the pulp in order to keep up with the volume. This works out well for us here who don’t eat wheat products. I make bread, muffins, and cake most often. Ryan makes pancakes and chocolate chip cookies.
|what to do with almond pulp???|
David Lebovitz, the Paris based food writer, wrote in The Sweet Life in Paris, “Every Frenchwoman I know loves chocolate so much she has a chocolate cake in her repetoire that she’s committed to memory, one she can make on a moment’s notice”. Although not French, I have taken this predilection to heart. My recipe is based on this flourless chocolate cake recipe, updated by yours truly to incorporate the almond pulp & a couple of other things. (I realize that this post is listed as ‘vegan’…that would refer to the almond milk, and not this cake. Sorry, vegans.)
Amazing Chocolate Cake
- 6 oz chocolate chips (good dark chocolate)
- 1/2 cup coconut oil (I suppose you could use butter)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 1 cup sugar (unrefined if possible)
- 1 tsp peppermint oil (optional but delicious)
- 1 cup almond pulp
- 3 egg yolks & one egg (this makes for a very soft cake, but 3 regular eggs will also work fine)
Preheat oven to 375°.
Oil & Line 8″ round pan with parchment.
Melt chocolate chips and coconut oil over a double boiler. Add all other ingredients, eggs last & mix well. Pour into pan and spread evenly. Bake for 25-30 minutes until done.
Voila! This cake is seriously amazing. It is not fluffy, but rather very dense and fudgy. No need for any embellishments. Sometimes I omit the peppermint oil and add cayenne, cinnamon, and dried cherries. Or I just make it plain. Sometimes I sprinkle more chocolate chips on top before baking it. Yum!
Enjoy! More almond pulp recipes to come…