I’ve been on the almond milk band wagon for years now. I add a splash to my coffee, a cup to my smoothies, oatmeal, and granola.
Why almond milk? Consuming too much dairy is a nightmare for my skin and sometimes gives me an upset stomach. (This is catastrophic considering I love me a Starbucks latte more than a basic college girl during ‘Pumpkin spice’ season… and currently I live in Europe, which is basically the Mecca for all heavenly cheeses.)
Almond milk is a rare find here in Istanbul. If I do find it, it’s full of additives, sugars and extra ingredients I don’t want in my milk. A couple of years ago I took the plunge and made my own at home. I’ve recently perfected my recipe. It is naturally sweetened, creamy and delicious.
Let’s milk some almonds..
Soak 1 cup of almonds in water overnight (8 or more hours). Soaking the almonds makes them juicy, plump and easy to blend. It also removes enzyme inhibitors (causing digestive discomfort) naturally contained in their skins. Soaking and then rinsing well helps rid these toxins.
Now we have a cup of juicy, plump almonds.
I like my almond milk sweet, so along with 1 cup of almonds I added 3.5 cups of filtered water (not the water the almonds were soaking in) and 3 to 4 pitted dates to the blender.
After blending it will look something like this thick mess.
To get that almond milk we need to get rid of all the almond pulp. I strain the blended almond mixture using a cheesecloth. It’s thin and loosely woven. You can buy a fancy nut bag (yup, go ahead and laugh at the name) but I found a cheesecloth works just fine.
Pour the almond mixture slowly over the cheesecloth, straining into the bowl. You may have to hold the cloth. This is a slow process. Be patient.
Bring the edges of the cheesecloth together and squeeze all the almond life out of it.
You want all the milk you can get!
After you’ve declared the cheesecloth lifeless, you’ll be left with a bowl full of almond milk and a cheesecloth filled with almond pulp. DON’T THROW IT AWAY! You can dehydrate the pulp to get almond meal (great in baked goods). See recipe card below.
Pour the bowl of almond milk back into the (rinsed) blender and add 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of vanilla and 1/4tsp of salt. Blend until fully combined.
Voila! Pour the milk into a storage container and keep in the refrigerator. It’s good for up to 4 days.
- 1 cup of raw almonds
- 3 1/2 cups of filtered water
- 3 or 4 pitted dates (the more dates, the sweeter it is)
- 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- Soak almonds in water overnight (8 or more hours).
- Blend soaked and rinsed almonds, 3.5 cups of filtered water and 3 to 4 pitted dates together on high speed for at least 1 minute.
- Lay a cheesecloth over a clean bowl and slowly pour the blended almond mixture over the cheesecloth, straining into the bowl. Be patient as it takes time. Squeeze the cheesecloth for all the milk it's worth.
- Pour the almond milk back into the rinsed blender and add cinnamon, vanilla and salt. Blend until combined.
- Store almond milk in a container and refrigerate. It's great for up to 4 days.
- *Shake the jar/container well before drinking as the mixture may separate while sitting in the fridge.
- *Dehydrate the almond pulp to make almond meal by spreading the pulp into a thin layer on a baking sheet and setting your oven to the lowest heat setting. The pulp will dry out after about 3 hours.