View Full Version : Commercial soy/rice/almond/hazelnut/etc milks vs. making one's own?
06-06-2005, 05:35 AM
I've read a number of people's references to making their own milks. Two questions:
o What's undesirable about commercial milks? Is it the various additives, eg. vitamin A palmitate to pretend that it's fortified?
o I've seen references to specialized soy milk machines. Are they worth an investment, or might something like a vitamix serve the same purpose?
06-06-2005, 06:35 AM
Yes, it's the additives (like most commercial almond milks I'VE seen had carrageenan in them and there was something written about that once, I forget) and more than likely, the "milks" are not raw but have been boiled; this is especially true for soymilk.
The soymilk makers boil the water, so they wouldn't be raw. If you are aspiring to eat a 100% raw food diet, then you want your "milks" to be as fresh as possible.
It's really simple (and probably cheaper too) to make your own almond and other nut/seed, etc. milk. It's just a matter of blending a cup of almonds with a cup (I think) of water, strain through a nutmilk bag (or you can go to your nearest hardware, Home Depot, Lowe's type store and get a paint strainer bag really cheap and it will serve the same purpose) and there's your milk. You can add dates or honey and a dash or two of sea salt and even some vanilla for added flavor.
I don't have any experience with making rice milk, but a few of our members mentioned in another thread about having made their own (raw) rice milk really easily and that it was good. If you want, you can do a search using the banana icon up top and type in "raw rice milk" or something to that effect to locate that thread.
06-06-2005, 06:44 AM
I've never made rice milk either. Almond milk is quite easy and yes, a Vita-Mix is excellent for doing it. I take a cup of raw, organic almonds, soak for approx. 12 hours, throw them in the blender w/ about 3 Cups of water and do it to it. (btw ~ some say to blanch the almonds first. Personally, I don't see the point). Strain, drink and/or refrigerate. It is soooo refreshing with some raw fudge or cookies!!!!
And yes, I'm pretty sure any commercial milks have been pasturized or heated at some point. If something is in a box, can or bottle, unless it says otherwise, it usually has had SOMEthing done to it to maintain shelf-life.
Do you soak the Almonds in the 'fridge...or on the kitchen counter?
06-06-2005, 09:45 AM
Do you use the soak water when you make the milk?
06-06-2005, 10:13 AM
Hey, any recipes for using the stuff left over from the almond milk? Somewhere there was a reference to using the leftover stuff for halvah...not on this board, I don't think.
Now THAT would be grand! Almond milk and halvah made from the leftovers...
06-06-2005, 12:32 PM
Jodi, I soak the almonds on my kitchen counter.
Katrina, do not use the soak water. Drain the nuts or seeds and rinse well. Then proceed with blending the nuts with fresh water in your blender.
06-06-2005, 12:36 PM
Yes, the raw food uncookbooks are rife with recipes using the almond pulp. The simplest thing is to use it in crackers or pie crusts.
06-06-2005, 02:17 PM
I usually just soak them on the counter, rinse ( do NOT used the soak water), then put rinsed almonds in clean, fresh water ~ and you're good to go!
06-07-2005, 02:18 PM
yes, it is cheaper to make your own as rawkinlocs suggested.
also, that 1 cup to 1 cup ration will leave you with cream rather than milk.
many books call for 1 cup nuts to 2 or 3 cups water but still that makes a very thick (and expensive) milk...along the lines of whole milk.
i make mine comparable to "lowfat" milk: i soak 1 cup of nuts/seeds and then (drain of course) and put in the blender with 1 cup of water....blend till combined. then i add 3 to 4 more cups (depending on your tastes) of water, a pinch of sea salt (this lifts the flavor), sweetener (some needs more than others) such as honey, agave, etc...start with 1-2 tsp and play with it till it is good for you. i use about 2 tsp probably (give or take) and any seasonings that you want (i don't always do this step, just sometimes) such as carob (which is fantastic with sesame milk, helps to cut the bitterness. i use about 1/3-1/2 cup of raw carob) or cinnamon or even nutmeg. then strain it in a mesh bag (i use paint strainers from the paint store...they are just a nylon mesh bag that is about 1/10th or less the price of the "nut milk bags" and frankly, they last longer!). this will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days (store it in glass containers).
i make different varieties:
cashew (very creamy)
sunflower (economical and tasty with cinnamon)
pumpkin (different, definitely not for cereal, has a smoky flavor...but good)
sesame (with carob)
sesame almond (good, less expensive than straight almond and the added bonus of calcium)
sunflower/almond (again less expensive than plain almond)
almond/cashew (like dessert!)
i have also made pistachio (my husband liked it, but that is very expensive and frankly, don't think it did the pistachios justice...if you do it, don't soak them more than an hour or so....any longer and it takes too much flavor away. ditto this for pecan milk which i have also made, but frankly, i would rather just eat the nuts. but, if you do make, don't soak long at all...maybe an hour)
also, i have made rice milk....but not as much recently. rice is technically not raw, but some people use brown rice and say that it sprouts, but i have not tried that so i can't say if that is true. i will say that if you make rice milk, use the sweet brown rice. i get that in bulk at WF. it is shorter and stubbier looking. and use 1 cup of rice to about 2 1/2-3 cups of water (since the rice is not as rich as the nuts and seeds). To the rice milk, add some almond extract and some cinnamon, or better yet make almond/rice combo milk and add cinnamon.....it will be just like horchata.
hope this helps.
06-07-2005, 05:34 PM
mmmmmm , thanks kristi!
06-07-2005, 08:14 PM
This is what I often do with the leftover almond pulp:
Apple Banana Cookies
leftover nut pulp
1 apple, grated
2 ripe bananas, mashed
a little honey
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. sea salt
Blend all together in processor. Drop by spoonfuls onto Teflex sheet and dehydrate a few hours.
06-07-2005, 08:18 PM
Yummmm. Thanks, Allison ... and Krista. I've been following this thread, though I've really not much to post, and think I'll try this. I've been eating more simply, but occasionally do want to have grawnola (usually just blend some hemp seeds with water and a banana) and think I'll try almond milk for a change ... and the cookies sound like a great way to use the pulp.
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