Our dear friend and informally adopted family member Issa Lopez, wonderful, lovely, whip-smart, funny, excellent story-teller, caring, beautiful person and movie maker extraordinaire (of Casi Devas fame – a must see movie) has been staying with us while she casts her most recent movie before going down to Mexico to shoot it. We have been having a very nice time with her. She is a perfect house-guest – I mean if you can call an informally adopted person a ‘guest.’ Just to say that we enjoy having her around. Easy, engaging, and always interesting. We have had a couple of cooking adventures. My favorite has been the almond milk adventure. The most simple of things. Delicious. Really delicious and far superior to the store bought variety. You may never go back except in the case of an emergency (financial or ‘I need it now’). Here’s how to make it. I usually triple this recipe so that it lasts in the refrigerator otherwise we’re making it a couple of times a week. The almond tends to be devoured pretty quickly. Everyone loves it but we have stored it in the fridge for the better part of the week. I think it would last longer in there. It’s just water and nuts so I think you could keep it (if you could keep it around) for longer.
My step-daughter Alexandra was also over when we were making the first batch of the milk so she modeled the milking process for us. Those are Alexandra’s hands in the photo. Credit where credit is due!
Also Issa got into the true spirit and did some research on what to do with the almond meal left in the nut milk bag after the milk is extracted. The answer is to spread it out on parchment paper on a baking sheet and dry in the oven at 200° for a couple of hours. You can then save it and use it for baking (see the June 20, 2012 post on making almond meal tart crusts.
That very excellent recipe came from my oldest friend who is the best home cook I have ever known. I met her on my first day of Kindergarten – a million years ago – Disa Fink, wife of brewmeister Niels Thompson, of the famous Danish Wintercoat brewery – check it out).
1 cup of organic almonds
water to soak them in
filtered water for the almond milk
vanilla or almond extract (optional)
pinch of salt (optional)
Nut milk bag
Soak the almonds for a few hours or overnight Drain the almonds. Put the almonds and 3 cups of filtered water into a blender If you’re using vanilla or almond extract and/or salt throw that in now as well. Turn on the blender, turn it up to ‘High’ and blend for 3 minutes. Pour the blended almond milk into the nut milk bag and hold it over a bowl. Very gently massage the milk through the bag.
We initially though we could just hang the bag over a bowl and the milk would drip out but that doesn’t work because the ground almonds are too fine and they clog up the milk bag. Here’s a photo of first effort. Funny right?
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