I get a lot of how-to questions related to food and cooking but this, above all, is the top. I'm excited to share a bit of insight on one of the most health conscious (and economic conscious) things you can do for yourself and your family in the kitchen this week.
A few years ago I started making my own almond milk. It's becoming a bit more common these days, but back then it was obscure in and unfathomable. "You can make that stuff?" Well, I'd sure hope so. Eating or drinking something that can't be made outside of a factory should probably make you think twice.
(Not here to judge, but I'd also appreciate if someone could come up with a way to make homemade Cheeto's so I can start thinking of them as real food again.)
I did a quick search on almond milk and found that it's causing quite the stir: Are there really less than 7% of almonds in an entire carton? Is the kind of carrageenan in the milk really that bad for you? Do the benefits of local cows milk outweigh the benefits of modified almond milk?
You can find arguments surrounding just about every sort of food these days, which is why I mostly stick to two simple rules:
- Eat what makes you're body and mind feel good in the short and long run.
- Try to make it at home from whole ingredients.
And one of the best ways I can demonstrate this is to show you how I make my own almond milk and almond flour from one $6 bag of raw almonds. Why? Well, besides the aforementioned:
- I know what's in my milk (only two ingredients and no additives)
- It's fresh and needs to be kept cold (almond milk that lasts for ages on a shelf is scary)
- The flour is better than what's on the market
- It saves money
- It's the opposite of wasteful
- It's fun!
I start with a 1 pound bag of raw almonds from Trader Joe's for $5.99. If you don't live near a Trader Joe's, I suggest purchasing them from the bulk section of your local market.
Here's what else you'll need:
HOMEMADE ALMOND MILK AND FLOUR
Yield 9 cups of milk and 3 cups of flour
1 pound raw almonds
9 cups filtered water
I make milk in batches over a few days so that it stays fresh. It is best to use within 2-3 days. Don't forget to shake before drinking as separation is normal.
METHOD FOR MILK
- Soak 1 cup of almonds in water (just until they're covered) overnight in your refrigerator.
- Rinse almonds and place in blender with 3 cups of filtered water.
- Pulse the blender a few times to get them moving, then blend for 2-3 minutes.
- Place nut milk bag over a bowl and pour almonds and water through the bag.
- Gently squeeze the bag over the bowl until you've drained the milk from the almonds.
- Place almond pulp in a container and freeze.
- Repeat process for milk twice more.
METHOD FOR FLOUR
- Defrost any frozen almond pulp.
- Evenly distribue pulp on a cookie sheet.
- Place in oven at 170 degrees F for 6-8 hours. I normally do this overnight, but it's good to check every few hours and stir it around. You're basically dehydrating any liquid from the almonds.
- It's ready when the pulp has taken on a cracker-like consistency, breaks easy, and smells nice and nutty in your home!
- Blend small batches at a time until all you have left is soft, beautiful almond flour!
Not sure what to do with you almond flour? I suggest beginning with these delicious blueberry muffins.