Friday, September 27, 2013

Almond Milk / Almond Flour / Date Shake

The other day I made almond milk, almond flour and an almond date shake. I felt like a healthy, green, homemaking, money saving goddess! It was awesome. If any of you have never made almond milk before and you actually drink almond milk, you should make it. Because its really fun! Its so easy too! 2 ingredients? Yes. Low in calories and high in protein and antioxidants? Yes. I love almond milk. I have never had a problem drinking regular milk but for whatever reason I tried it back in my barista days and fell in love. I didn't know at the time how healthy it was, only that it was lower in calories than regular milk and that it was yummy. I bought the Costco sized packs of almond milk for awhile, but still its an expensive thing to be buying all the time. Especially when you don't need it for a dietary restriction. I didn't know until recently that you can MAKE it. For super cheap! My husband picked up a pound of almonds for $5 and I maybe used 1/4 of it. So for $1.20 I was able to make 32 ounces or 4 cups of almond milk. That's way cheaper than buying it at the store and plenty to last me for awhile. Today I am going to show you, A. How to make it, B. How to make flour out of the leftover almond meal and C. What to make with your almond milk. Pretty cool huh?

Almond Milk

Ingredients:
1 Cup Raw (Organic if possible) Almonds
Water
Pinch of Salt

Directions:
Soak 1 cup of almonds in water for 6 hours or overnight. Easy. Just cover the almonds with water in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap, then go to bed. No need to measure the water, just enough to cover the almonds. In the morning, add a pinch of salt to the bowl, then drain and rinse the almonds in a strainer. Then put almonds in a blender or other high powered blending machine (I'm sure a food processor would work as well) and add 4 cups of filtered water. Then this is the fun part. Blend for 2-3 mins. I don't know why, but for whatever reason I found watching the almonds and water turn that milky white color was really cool. Line your strainer with cheesecloth (see that stuff comes in handy!) and strain through back into a bowl. You will need to wrap up the ends of the cheesecloth and squeeze out all the excess liquid. I thought that was kind of fun too. Save the pulp for another use, or the next recipe! Pour the almond milk into a (sterilized) mason jar and keep in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Note: Its important to sterilize the jar so that bacteria doesn't get in there causing it to go bad. To sterilize a glass jar, all you do is put it (and the lid) in a pot of boiling water for about 5-10 mins.

Now what to do with that leftover pulp from all the almonds? Well let me show you.....


Almond Flour

Ingredients:
Leftover Almond Pulp from making Almond Milk

Directions:
Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Set your oven to the 170 degrees or the lowest setting possible. Bake 3-4 hours or until almond meal is all dehydrated. After this, run it through the food processor to make it powdery. You can use this flour in baking, cooking (one idea is to use it as the flour for onion rings, yum!) or throw it in your morning shake. Love that you don't waste it!



Now what else can you do with the Almond Milk and Almond Flour you just made?

Make a Date Shake!!

Date Shake (not, date like this will get you a date......Date as in, the edible prune-y kind)

Ingredients:
1 Banana
4 Dates (Try to find the naked, unprocessed dates and make sure to take the pit out)
1/2 Cup Almond Milk
1 Tsp. Vanilla extract
Handful of Almond Flour or a handful of almonds

Directions: Place ingredients in the blender and blend for 1 minute. Drink up and enjoy! You can play around with ingredients to make this in hundreds of ways. The possibilities are endless. You can add yogurt, cinnamon, cocoa powder or ice. You can take out the almonds also if you don't like the grainy-ness. Make it how you like it!


This recipe is great because it is super healthy, high in protein and vitamins and can be used as a great meal substitute. It keeps you full for hours!

Have fun making these almond recipes and if you have any special almond recipes that you like to make please share! Have a great weekend everyone!

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