I recently came across a video on youtube about making your own plant milk and was astonished at how easy and how cheap it is to do and wanted to share it here with you.
There are many reasons why more and more people have stopped drinking dairy and are turning to alternatives.
A considerable proportion of the population are lactose intolerant and so for health reasons need to avoid dairy.
Others choose to give up dairy for ethical reasons [calves are taken away from their mothers as soon as they are born so humans can drink the milk], environmental reasons [plant based milks need far less land, water and other resources then dairy] and some people stop drinking dairy simply to lose weight.
Whatever the reason, well done and welcome to a world full of exciting new tastes and flavours! 🙂
The only true downer about dairy alternatives is the price tag…here in Ireland anyways, soya milk, rice milk, coconut milk are all quite pricey, usually averaging about three euro per litre. As for oat or hemp milk or nuts milks, they are much harder to find and just as dear.
The good news is that making your own milk is super easy and super cheap!
Coconut milk is made slightly different to other milks in that, it needs hot water but that is the only difference.
I find coconut milk quite sweet so don’t recommend adding anything for extra sweetness such as dates, as it doesn’t need it.
If you want a healthy warming treat on these cold autumn evenings, a cup of Hot Chocolate Coconut Milk is just what you need!
Simply combine the ingredients together in a saucepan and heat until it starts to steam. Pour into a mug and enjoy. For extra yumminess, add a sprinkling of caca powder on top.
In my last post, I talked about the many wonders of flaxseed and all its incredible uses and here is another.
Flaxseed makes for a lovely mild milk full of nutrients and is made by soaking the seeds in water overnight, place in the blender until smooth, then sieve and filter and bottle.
The flaxseeds can be used again one more time, as they are so full of natural goodness and plant oils.
One of the first milks I made last week was Oat milk. The first recipe I tried was just plain oat milk and as simple as could be. I put a cup of oats in water, left it to soak for half a hour, then blended until smooth, sieved and filtered and then bottled.
Result, a rich creamy milk but a trifle too bland for my tastes. This recipe would be more suited for soups, smoothies and sauces.
So onto the next recipe: this time I added three pitted dates and half a teaspoon of vanilla essence and only used half the quantity of oats.
Result, a smoother sweeter milk that tasted delicious nice & cold straight from out of the fridge and onto my cereal. Definite winner! Lovely in cereal, in your tea or on its own and full of natural goodness!
One popular dairy alternative is Almond milk, which has many health benefits and for those who like almonds, is a must!
It is important to use raw ideally organic almonds and if you don’t like the slightly earthy colour, use pealed almonds.
Simply soak a cup of almonds overnight in water, discard the water in the morning and then add fresh water to the nuts, place in the blender and whizz…sieve and filter using a muslin cloth or cheese-bag.
Enjoy as a hot drink with a sprinkling of cinnamon or coco powder or add to smoothies for a nutrient boast.
One recipe I tried today was Hazelnut milk. I soaked a cup of blanched raw hazelnuts in water overnight. This morning, I changed the water, blended and filtered. Delicious! For extra sweetness add a pitted date or two.
Another tasty option is to add organic cacao powder to make a delicious chocolate substitute drink.
I recommend a few drops of vanilla essence and two pitted dates for extra sweetness.
Another popular dairy alternative is Rice milk. Below is the easy to follow recipe. Best of all if you have rice left over from last night’s dinner, it wont go to waste!
We come at last to the most popular and most readily available of the plant milks, Soya milk.
Soya milk is everywhere these days and available in a wide variety of flavours from vanilla to chocolate to strawberry.
However most soya milk is long life milk which has been so treated that most of the nutrients have been destroyed in the process. Fresh really is best.
To make Soya milk, you need raw soya beans, ideally organic, water, vanilla essence and if desired either apple juice or three pitted dates.
- ½ cup white soybeans
- 2-3 cups water for soaking
- 4 cups water for blending
- Three pitted dates or two tablespoons of Apple juice to sweeten
- Soak soybeans in 2-3 cups of water overnight.
- Discard water and rinse soybeans.
- Remove skins as best you can.
- Add soybeans and 4 cups water to blender.
- Blend until smooth.
- Strain the blended mixture using a piece of muslin or A tight-weave cloth is preferable, as twisting the top tightly enables you to continue squeezing out more milk.
- Heat the strained milk in a heavy-bottom pan to 180ºF (82ºC). Hold this temperature for 20 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. Cool the milk and store.
- Refrigerate up to 4 days.
Another variant of this simple recipe is to use the raw green soya beans:
*Important note: the material left over after filtering your plant milk can be used in baking or smoothies.*
Some suggestions for what alternative milk works best for cooking, baking etc.
I shall finish tonights post with a recipe for Death Wish Irish Coffee:
What you need:
- Strong Coffee, brewed [There is an actual brand called Death Wish Coffee that you can buy]
- Irish Whiskey
- 1 can of unsweetened coconut milk [ *Refrigerate coconut milk for at least six hours.]
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon of very hot water
- Mason Jar, frozen for 15 minutes
- Stemmed Glass
- Shake heavy cream and 1 teaspoon of maple syrup in freezing cold mason jar for two minutes straight. Freeze for up to 15 minutes before serving.
- Brew strong coffee.
- Just use the excess water from the kettle to preheat your glass in the next step.
- Melt brown sugar into hot water and swish. Since the whipped cream that we made is only lightly sweetened, this is your opportunity to add more sugar if you enjoy very sweet coffee.
- Pour your glass 3/4 of they way full with Coffee. That should leave the perfect amount of space for whiskey and cream
- Add a shot of Irish whiskey
- Add cream
I will be making Flaxseed warming neck pillows, Rice heat pads and other natural products to keep you toasty this winter! 🙂