Almonds are amazing. They’re low in sugar and carbohydrates, and high in delicious fat. They also make a super refreshing milk, and an incredibly useful flour replacement for anyone on a low carb, paleo, grain free or gluten free diet.
This week I finally made almond milk and almond meal for the first time. It was so simple and easy, and the almond milk was so delicious. It sounds silly, but I was actually shocked at how much this almond milk tastes like almonds, compared to the store bought version. It also works out to be a lot cheaper than buying almond meal and almond milk from the shops (at least in Australia, where both are crazy expensive).
After doing some research I’ve learned a few interesting things about making almond milk. Firstly, it’s important to soak the almonds before hand, to remove the phytic acid (an acid present in many nuts and seeds that can inhibit our body’s ability to absorb important minerals). Secondly, you can make almond milk with either the skins on or off. Removing skins can be time consuming and tedious but means that the milk and meal will be lighter in colour and less bitter, whilst leaving the skins on will result in a stronger almond taste and a slightly darker colour.
1 cup almonds
4 cups water, plus extra for soaking
1. Soak the almonds in water for 6 to 12 hours. Discard water when done.
2. (Optional) Remove the skins by pouring boiling water over your pre-soaked almonds and leaving to sit for 5-10 minutes. Drain and transfer the almonds to a bowl filled with cold ice water (this will stop the almonds from over cooking). Peel the skins by squeezing the base of each almond – they should pop right out.
3. Combine the almonds with the 4 cups of water and blend until creamy and the almonds have turned into a fine paste/meal.
4. Strain the almond milk from the meal using a nut bag, cheesecloth or fine sieve. Store the milk in jars or bottles in the fridge for 3 – 5 days.
5. To make almond meal, spread the strained almond mixture in an even layer over a baking tray lined with baking paper. Place in a low oven (around 120ºC) and bake for 1 -3 hours, until completely dry. I found that having the door to the oven slightly open helped to speed this up. If necessary, blend in a food processor to create a finer meal.