Homemade Almond Milk!
If you have taken time to search Pinterest, you will have discovered multiple almond milk recipes. Some of these may work just fine, yielding a tasty almond milk... but most directions will also yield a product too high in fat to use in "Fuel Pull" Trim Healthy Mama recipes!
Almond milk with higher fat content is acceptable in "S" categories, but not something you probably want to be drinking very often, unless of course, you are a wisp and need to gain weight. For myself, I like to be sure I am not overly-zealous with a concentrated product when it isn't necessary.
To ensure your homemade almond milk is, indeed, a Fuel Pull, the measurements will seem quite "skimpy"! Do not fear, however, as the final product is wonderful... In our opinion, much better than commercially-prepared products, and as we are skipping all the additives, this is healthier too!
Happily, 1/4 cup of almonds to 8 cups of water will yield 16, 1/2 cup servings! Can you believe that? Better yet, there is no waste, as the strained "pulp" or "meal" can be dried in the oven, on a low temp, to make almond "flour". It is not quite how they do it commercially, but I have incorporated it into my baking with great results! *You may need to keep the small portions in the fridge or freezer, saving up, until you have enough to dry.
It should be noted that many store-bought almond milks contain a thickening agent, such as "Carrageenan" (which we do not feel overly comfortable with) - so if you enjoy that smooth, creamy texture, it is fairly simple to duplicate by adding a teensy bit of Glucomannan or Xanthan Gum (both of which we feel far more comfortable using.)
Now, this recipe requires 8-12 hours to complete… but, don’t panic! The actual hands-on time is minimal... and you will have your own, homemade almond milk by tomorrow! Begin: 8-12 ahead
Start: 8-12 hours ahead
Yield: 1/2 gallon (16, 1/2 cup servings)
1/4 C raw almonds
8 C water (separated)
*Optional 1 tsp vanilla
*Optional dash of salt
*Optional Glucomannan or Xanthan Gum
*Optional THM Pure Stevia Extract or Sweet Blend
1. Place almonds into a glass jar. Add water to approximately 2 inches above the almond line.
Cover loosely and place in fridge to soak, 8 – 12 hours. Almonds will swell and soften slightly.
2. Rinse almonds in fresh water; skins can be slipped by rubbing almonds between your hands or pinching between your fingers.
Place in blender with 2 cups of water. *This allows us to strain only 2 cups of almond milk, instead of 8... You will see in a minute! Cuisinart Smart Power Duet Blender/Processor
3. Pulse several times then blend on medium high, until almonds are tiny specks. This can take up to 2-3 minutes, depending upon your blender.
4. Strain through a metal coffee filter, cheesecloth, bandana, nut-bag, or even tee-shirt material.
*I use a double-layer of cheesecloth (or a bandana) across the top of my 1/2 gallon pickle jar.
5. Squeeze the remaining milk from the cloth. For "plain" almond milk, remove strainer, then add more water to the jar, to reach 8 cups. Place lid on and shake.
OPTIONAL: You can pour the strained milk back into your blender, add your other ingredients and blend 1 - 2 minutes.
Adding Glucomannan or Xanthan Gum will give the finished product a smooth, creamy texture. Stevia will add sweetness. Vanilla extract may also be added, making your milk seem more like store-purchased almond milk... but a healthified version!
Must be refrigerated or frozen. It is best to store in a covered glass jar. Use within 3 days or freeze leftovers in ice-cube trays, to be used for Tummy Tucking Ice Cream or smoothies.
If you would like, you can now use your leftover almond pulp to make Homemade Almond Flour!