My son loves smoothies, this is my super simple go-to blend when I need a meal for him in a minute.
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Bear with me, I know that making your own almond milk sounds a little “ain’t nobody got time for that.” I promise that with the right tools, making your own almond milk is quick, easy and so delicious. Bonus is that there is no waste and you know every single thing in your milk.
First up is the tools.
You need a blender and a nut milk bag. (Yes, I giggle every time I say nut milk bag because I am a 13 year old boy trapped inside a 32 year old woman.) While I am sure a fancy high speed blender makes this job super easy, I have used both my (now died of old age) magic bullet blender and now my Cuisinart. I purchased my bag at a local health food store, or it can be found on Amazon. You could substitute cheesecloth, but this bag is worth every bit of the $10 I paid for it because it is easy to use and clean.
Now, lets get nutty!
For this recipe I am using some whole, raw unpasteurized almonds that are imported from Italy. I picked them up at a local health food store. There is a lot of current controversy about “raw” almonds grown in the USA right now. All US grown almonds must be pasteurized using either steam or a chemical process, but they are all listed as raw. For me, I’m trying to stay away from added chemicals so I picked up these imported almonds. I have more research to do to find out what brands use which method, because I like to buy homegrown products. If anybody knows a good source for this information I would love to hear from you!
Soak your almonds
I add about 1 cup of raw almonds to a quart size canning jar and fill with water. I have no idea if this should sit at room temp or in the fridge, so I opt for the fridge (side note: I also store all my nuts in the fridge to help keep them fresh) The water soak will help plump up the almonds and get them ready to blend.
After an overnight soak, rinse and drain the almonds. Add the rinsed almonds to your blender with 3-4 cups of fresh water. Blend blend blend. How long will depend on your blender. I probably do about 2 minutes total. Once I can see that all the almond bits are tiny and my blender doesn’t sound like it is chopping anything anymore.
Now you will pour the contents of your blender through the nut milk bag. I use a 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup for this and it works perfectly. Drain all the liquid out of the bag by squeezing. I’ve never milked a cow but I imagine the process is somewhat similar. Make sure you squeeze all the liquid out, the creamiest milk is in those last few squeezes.
I pour the milk into a quart size canning jar for storage. There will be some settling as it sits in the fridge so be sure to shake it gently before pouring a glass.
What will you add?
I use my almond milk pretty exclusively for smoothies so I don’t add any sweeteners or flavors. Your imagination is your only limit for what you could add. Try different nuts, add some coconut, maybe some vanilla or dates.
What about the leftovers?
You will be left with some almond pulp in your bag. This is basically wet almond meal. You could use it in muffins or granola. There are tons of Paleo recipes on the internet that call for almond meal. You can dry it for a few hours in your oven on the lowest setting and store it in the freezer. I always err on the side of caution for food safety which is why even after drying I suggest the freezer.
Today I’m bringing you a simple green juice recipe. Except it really isn’t green, this one is purpleish. In my world, I can call it a green juice if I put greens in it. Juicing is one of the ways I use up odds and ends of veggies and fruit in the house. Whatever I have too much of, goes into the juicer. Great way to sneak in some things that I might not eat otherwise (I’m looking at you, beets).
So here is my “recipe” (Really just use whatever I have handy, but this is a guide)
- 3 leaves kale
- one small beet with greens
- half of a red bell pepper
- one orange
- one lemon
- three pears (pears make it kind of thick, I usually use one or two apples but I needed to use these pears)
- two stalks celery
- 1/2 lb carrots (I had rainbow carrots, hence the purple juice)
Juice them up and you get this delightful looking mixture
But it mixes up nicely and then your local toddler will beg for some
And he won’t even make eye contact while he slurps it down.
I’m currently using a cheap juicer I purchased from Aldi and re-running the pulp. It’s fine for occasional juicing but I plan on upgrading when I have the money. Some great options are this Breville juicer or this Omega one.
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Local toddler had a little cold the other day, which has morphed into some sort of super bug for me. I am also allergic to everything on earth, so it could be that. Anyways, I thought I would hop in and share my favorite “remedy.” It looks a little gross (hence the instagram looking photo above) but it actually tastes great, and I always feel better after drinking it.
To a hot mug of your favorite green tea, add:
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp honey (raw and local)
- juice of 1/2 a lemon (I’m using Meyer lemon from Door to Door Organics, sweeter and less acidic)
The cinnamon swirls and clumps and generally looks gross, but it tastes good. I just stab the lemon with a fork and keep stirring to help the cinnamon integrate.
I got into juicing after watching “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead.” Great documentary, and gave me the final push I needed to take the leap into juicing. Many people do juice fasts, but in our house it is just a supplement to our diets. Great way to pack in a lot of micro-nutrients, we do a ton of juicing if anybody in the house is sick. Otherwise, we juice a few times a week to use up produce and get some extra fruits and veggies in. Local toddler and I love green juices, but those are an aquired taste. Walking on Sunshine is a great into to juicing.
Making two servings of juice is my usual mojo. I usually drink some, save some for later, give some to local toddler, and make some popsicles with the leftovers. I have a cheap juicer from Aldi, I eventually will get this Breville Juicer. I really now have my eye on this Omega one on the recommendation of Grant. If you are using a cheap juicer, the best way to get the most juice is to re-run the pulp.
The delightful thing about juicing, is that there is no recipe. Just add whatever you like, but here is my basic recipe:
- two oranges, peeled and quartered
- two apples, cored and quartered
- 1/2lb carrots, chopped in half
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 stalk celery, chopped in half
- juice of 1/2 a lemon
Throw everything in the juicer except the lemon. I don’t like the flavor of the lemon when it goes through the juicer, so I squeeze it into the juice.
Also makes wonderful popsicles
Local toddler loves fresh juice, but he might like popsicles just a little bit more.
Disclaimer: Any Amazon links I post are probably affiliate links. This means if you buy that item via that link I make a few pennies from Amazon.