It’s pronounced “aahmond,” because the farmers shook the trees so hard, the “L” fell right out!
Kidding aside, I drink my fair share of almond milk. I try to limit dairy intake, and almond is my favorite faux-milk for cereal, baking, and cookie-dunking. Unfortunately, almond milk comes with lots of other junk in it besides almonds. Namely:
- Tapioca starch
- Tricalcium phosphate
- Xanthan gum (Xana-what? Xanadu?)
- Potassium citrate
- Sunflower lecithin
- Ergocalciferol (gesundheit!)
- DL-Alpha Tocopherol Acetate (oh my.)
Not only can I hardly pronounce most of those, I have no idea what they are or why they have a place in my almond milk. Fortunately, my uncle Matt recently caught my ear when he said he makes his OWN almond milk, from scratch! And guess what? The only ingredients are almonds and water. So, mega-props to Uncle Matt for coming up with this (I think Google may have helped), and here goes my first photo-blogged kitchen adventure! Excuse the iPhone photography.
Step One- Soak them aahmonds!
Overnight is best, says Matt, but 4 hours will do the trick. These babies bathed for a good 15 hours. Drain and rinse well.
1 cup of almonds will yield 3 cups of almond milk. This was about one cup of raw almonds.
Step Two: Blend ‘Em Up
Put your soaked almonds into your blender or food processor and add 3 cups of filtered water (per 1 cup of almonds). Blend on high for a few minutes, until the little pieces of almond skin that you see flying around get reeeeal tiny.
Step Three: Strain Away
Line a pitcher with a paint strainer. $1.99 for two at OSH, and you can probably reuse! Pour the contents of your blender into the lined pitcher and squeeze out the liquid. I recommend clean hands for this, because a lot of the liquid that ended up in the pitcher touched my hands.
You should be left with a pitcher full of delicious, xanthan gum-free almond milk. You’ll also have a strainer full of pulp. Uncle Matt used his as breadcrumbs- dry them out in the oven first, then mix with some olive oil for baked chicken or fish! I went the salmon route tonight, mixing mine with some garlic and basil that I combined in the food processor (photo is just raw pulp, before I put them in the oven and spiced ’em).
Uncle Matt points out that this milk will not last as long as the packaged version- probably due exactly to the fact that it doesn’t have all of those weird non-food ingredients that keep food edible for way longer than it should be. I poured mine into an empty almond milk container and plan to consume it before it goes bad. So, suck on that, ergocalciferol…if that is your real name.