How do you milk a nut? I get asked this a lot. Mainly when an unsuspecting friend finds themselves in a vegan restaurant staring at a menu of cashew cheese.Milking a nut is actually a simple process and homemade almond milk trumps shop-bought every, single time. Hands down. Competition over.
For many of you, you might not see the point in trying almond milk and I can understand it. So instead of listing the radical reasons, I would instead say ‘why not?’. Why not try it? If you have nothing to lose then why not give it a go. You will drastically reduce your sugar intake especially when compared to skimmed milk. You will increase the Vitamin E antioxidant levels in your body which helps in keeping the lung cells healthy and promotes a healthy heart. It is also easy to make the best almond milk and by that I mean, you can make almond milk that is organic, hormone free, antibiotic free, raw and fresh. By learning how to make almond milk you could simply transition to a vegan day once a week or you could be vegan one meal a day. It all starts with milking a nut.
To make almond milk you need organic almonds, water, a date, and a nut bag or tea strainer. Some people can manage to strain the milk with a muslin cloth but I find this really tricky. I use a muslin tea strainer that I bought in the local supermarket but you can buy nut bags online for a few euros.
Soaking the almonds overnight helps them to soften but it also helps make them more digestible. Soaking, sprouting, fermenting are all ancient techniques to help break down hard to digest compounds in our food and make them easier on our digestive system. This allows us to get the most out of our food. Almond milk also produces almond pulp. You can use this in a similar way to ground almonds – stir it into a cake batter, make it into granola or just add it to your smoothie for a protein boost.
200g almonds (soaked in water overnight)
1 date, pitted
Place the almonds into a container and soak overnight in water
Drain and place into a blender with 600ml of water and the date
Blend on high for approx 5 minutes
Place the nut bag into a large jug and pour the milk through it
Empty the nut pulp into a separate container (you might have to do this a few times depending on the size of the nut bag)
Store the nut milk in a jug/jar with a lid on in the fridge – it will keep for 2-3 days
To make vanilla or flavoured almond milk simply add in the vanilla or flavourings before blending.