Friday, May 6, 2011

Nut Milk - I'm Not Kidding

I'm going to blame having a teenager in the house for the fact that I can't say the words, "Nut Milk" without laughing. And I don't mean just in a scatological way, but the sound of it, too. I would expect to read it in a Warner Bros Looney Tunes manual. I would expect "Scrappy the Squirrel" to have Nut Milk. And now, I have a bottle of chilled & creamy Nut Milk in my refrigerator (snicker snicker.)

Almond Nut Milk
Here's the reality: Nut Milk is not only filling, full of fiber, chock full of nutrients - it has a really deep flavor that dairy milk (especially non-fat) is sometimes missing. For almost two years, I've been posting recipes with a very fun online group of friends called "Lets Lunch". What started as an idea for a "virtual lunch" with Cheryl (A Tiger In The Kitchen) and Elise (Cowgirl Chef) who live in two different parts of the world, has turned into a monthly online lunch club (that anyone can join) with people all over the planet.The special thing about today's "Lets Lunch" is that it represents the best of what blogging, tweeting and Face Booking can do: Bring together real people with real feelings for a real moment. One of our very fun and talented "Lets Lunch" buddies is on a restricted, all liquid diet as she successfully recovers from Cancer Surgery. So, this month - we all are posting liquid lunch ideas. It's a virtual way of sending a real message of love and support, while also posting some very cool liquid lunch ideas.
Almond Nut Milk Granita
(see directions for Granita here)

Maybe that's also the reason I can't say "Nut Milk" without laughing. It's the joy. Yeah, I'll admit it. It gives me great joy to think of ways that food and friends can come together for something very real life, using our virtual capabilities. I researched for a while before deciding I wanted to make something a little different (for me) that also introduces a new ingredient idea for other cooking. Even if it's just another way to make Chocolate Milk or a Healthy Smoothy.
Almond Nut Milk, Banana & Honey Smoothy
Join us in wishing a speedy recovery to Karen. Go check out the inventive liquid "Lets Lunch" posts from around the world. Enjoy making and drinking Nut Milk (pause for laughter), knowing that it's healthy, and can be used to replace dairy in baked goods, cereals and for a lot of your cooking liquids.
Almond Nut Milk Cappuccino

There are many different kinds of Nut Milk, including Cashew, Pecan, Pine Nuts and even Macadamia nuts. I tried Almond Milk because I've worked with them before and the taste is full, but with room to add flavorings too. I found the Ratio of nuts to water was about 1 cup of nuts to 3 cups of water, but you can experiment to see how thick or light you'd like it. I didn't add sugar, but I think a touch of Agave, Stevia, Honey or your choice of sugar would taste great.The researched tips suggested always using filtered water, and to keep Nut Milks refrigerated (since they're not pasteurized) for 2-4 days only. RECIPE: ALMOND NUT MILK

1 cup raw organic almonds

3 cups filtered water (heated)

1/2 Vanilla Bean

**Optional: cocoa, lavender,
honey, banana, caramel sauce, sweetener.

1) Soak the almonds in filtered water for at least 8-12 hours or overnight. Rinse and drain.
2) In a food processor, add the almonds and pulse til ground, but not into Nut Butter.
3) Split and scrape the vanilla out of the 1/2 vanilla bean (or a tsp vanilla paste) and add to the almonds, along with the heated water.
4) Puree together - taste and check along the way to please your own palate.
5) Strain the Nut Milk through double thickness of cheese cloth or through a Jelly bag. 6) Keep in a clean bottle in the refrigerator for drinking, baking (or my fav: adding chocolate, a banana & a tsp. honey and frothing it into a smoothie, Mmmm)

Join us for the next "Lets Lunch" by typing #letslunch into Twitter or leaving a comment here for me to contact you. We'd love to get to know you, and post together. Sending you sincere wishes for health and happiness and "Nut Milk" giggles.

See all of these fun and thoughtful posts for Lets Lunch:

Peanut Butter-Espresso Smoothie - Cooking in The Fruit Bowl

Miso Bacon Corn Chowder - A Tiger In The Kitchen

Cucumber-Avocado Gazpacho - Cowgirl Chef

Spring Greens Soup with Homemade Baguette - Caitlin Shetterly

Spring Pea & Mint Soup - Hot Curries & Cold Beer

Gazpacho - The Kitchen Trials

Turnip, Chinese Mushroom & Pork Soup - Be a Wok Star


GeoKaren said...

Thanks Cathy! I love the granita idea since plain liquids get boring. I also have to thank the whole gang for the love & support!


Rashda Khan said...

Hmm, did you add a little "something, something" to that nut milk? Sounds like you had all kinds of fun working on this post...just as you should! :)

ATigerInTheKitchen said...

I've been trying to figure out how to "Like" what Rashda said above. Hilarious... I adored this post! (And not just because it made me think unprintable things.) I love how healthy it looks and all your different suggestions for using it. Can't wait to try it...xx

Emma said...

I misread this the first time!! I thought it was *only* the granita... turns out there's more! Pleasant surprise for me.

Mai Hoang said...

Okay, once I got my dirty teenage thoughts out of my head, I really enjoyed this post! I have never had nut (okay, still laughing) milk before. And all the ways to use it is awesome!

Anonymous said...

I'm LOLing and learning at the same time! Thanks for infusing so much fun into Let's Lunch!

Savorique Gourmet said...

When I see all the wonderful types of nut milk available, I wonder why so many people still stick to far-from-the-healthiest cow milk. The simple smell of it makes me gag.
Thanks for sharing these ideas. I find almond milk pretty difficult to use since its taste is so strong.