Homemade Nut Milk
Making your own nut milk is very simple, and you get to control what goes into it. I prefer both almonds and cashews, as I love the creamy texture that cashews lend. If you prefer a sweet nut milk, simply add 2 or 3 pitted dates to the nuts you will soak overnight, process right along with the nuts, and then after you strained the milk, add a teaspoon or so of vanilla extract. It takes longer to soak the nuts than it does to make the milk, so the night before you want to make it, measure out
2 cups of raw, unprocessed Nuts (either all one kind or an assortment of almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, brazil nuts… some folks even toss in a good handful of oats or sunflower or pumpkin seeds.) Remember, use RAW, not roasted. I prefer 1 cup almonds and 1 cup cashews
Place the nuts in a bowl (large enough to allow the nuts to expand as they’re soaking), cover with cold water and place refrigerate overnight.
The next day, strain the liquid and rinse the nuts. Dump half of them into your blender, add about 3 cups water, and process on the highest setting for 3-5 minutes. (I use my old Vita-Mix; the time will vary from blender to blender, as will how fine the nut/water mix will be)
When all is finely processed, strain the mixture through several layers of butter cloth or cheesecloth.
Repeat this process with the remaining pre-soaked nuts.
When everything is strained to your liking, pour all of the strained nut milk back into your blender, add a pinch of sea salt and a pinch of xanthan gum, and process for another minute or two. (This is the time to add the vanilla, if you are using it) Then pour into a glass jar or pitcher, cover and refrigerate. This will last for up to 5 days, so unless you drink a lot of almond milk, it’s best to make every few days to prevent spoiling.
As for the leftover pulp, you may freeze it and use in smoothies, add a tablespoon or two to your bread or cookie recipe, dehydrate it and use in a gluten-free recipe in place of almond flour, or feed it to your chickens.