Homemade almond milk: low in calories and cholesterol

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Having lived in a boarding house for more than six years, the most convenient breakfast I can buy is cereal. Unfortunately, I've developed lactose intolerance, causing bloating and gas after drinking it in the morning. 

And so I shifted to soy milk. I would consume half a 250 ml container every morning for five straight days. After three weeks I felt weird. I can't move my joints without feeling stiffness. Sitting on my heels would hurt. Standing up was painful. I discovered that this was because of soy milk, which caused high uric acid and led to a kind of an arthritic or gout attack.

Fortunately, after several tests, I was negative for gout. It was all just the fault of soy milk.

Again, fortunately, there's another type of milk that has zero cholesterol/saturated fat and also low in purine content (purine breaks down to uric acid) - almond milk.

Almond milk is conveniently low in calories but high in nutrients. In supermarkets, it fetches more than P150 for 900ml to a liter. I've read plenty of articles where it said almond milk is pretty easy to make.

I referred to two recipes in making it:

  1. Allsortsofpretty: http://allsortsofpretty.com/how-to-make-almond-milk-and-almond-flour-a-surprisingly-easy-diy/
  2. Kitchn: http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-almond-milk-at-home-cooking-lessons-from-the-kitchn-189996

As mentioned in the recipes, you will need a cup of almonds and 8-10 cups of water, wherein 2-3 cups will be used in soaking overnight. In my almond milk, I only used five cups, which was more than enough for my own supply.

After soaking, wash the almonds thoroughly and place it in the blender. Add the water and blend away! You will see froth on the top fizzing away once blended.

Place the handkerchief or cheesecloth on top of the strainer and proceed to strain. Squeeze the cloth to extract any almond milk. Add some cocoa if you want a chocolate version and blend again. Then place it in your favorite jar - I bought mine for only P122 (it's on sale!).

Some tips:

  1. Roasted almonds is ok if you don't have raw almonds.
  2. For thicker milk, reduce the cups of water. For thinner milk, increase the water.
  3. Soaking the almonds overnight is a required step. I've read comments that said the milk tasted bitter after not soaking it in water. After soaking it, you can see the water getting murky. You definitely don't want that getting in your milk.
  4. In straining the milk, you can use a handkerchief or a kitchen towel instead of a nut bag or cheesecloth. I used a regular-sized hankie in creating milk.
  5. Don't throw away the pulp! Almond pulp can be made into almond flour by baking it in the oven for 3 hours. 
  6. Add cocoa or vanilla and whatever sweetener you like afterwards. You can clean the blender and place the strained milk again and blend it with any addition you like. I added cocoa on mine plus sugar.

At the end, I realized I spent more than when I buy almond milk haha but if you can source cheaper almonds, then it would be more worth it to make your own almond milk.

So, now it's your turn. Try it too! :)

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