There are so many people who’ve come before us, arrows and wagon wheels, obsidian tools, buffalo. Look out at the meadow, you can almost see them, generations dissolved in the bluegrass and hay. I want to try and be terrific. Even for an hour.
Hiya! After having quite a few friends and family ask how I make my super creamy barista style almond milk, I am here with a tutorial. There are a lot of directions, but don’t worry. It really isn’t very difficult.
First off, to toot my own horn, this almond milk is the best you will likely ever taste. Second, unlike many store bought milks, you choose the sweetness. I choose not at all, so you’ll have to figure out what you’d like to try and in what proportions on this front. Third, this milk doesn’t separate in the bottle or your favorite hot beverage. Finally, if lectins from almond skins make you break out in a rash, like they do my husband, or upset your tummy, like me, use blanched, as I do. They cost more but are totally worth it.
Now, for supplies:
A high speed blender is an absolute must
Large – 8 cup – glass measure
clean nut milk bag, cotton bag, or t-shirt
Just in case you are thinking, like I once did, that using your favorite stainless steel water bottle is a fine option for storage, please don’t. I have zero understanding of the chemistry, but no matter how freshly sanitized with boiling hot water, our precious milk promptly went bad. Giant sad face. Use glass. Read all of the directions, then get the proper sizes washed and ready.
Okay, let’s go! To make what we use over a week, we use these measurements, but, obviously, scale to your needs. The ratio is 1 part almonds to 4 parts water.
4 cups almonds, at room temperature
1 1/4 teaspoons salt (just over 1/4 teaspoon per cup of almonds)
3 cups boiling water, plus a little more
13 cups water
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum (1/8 teaspoon per cup of almonds)
Now that you’ve decided on your ratio, wash your hands. If you’re using gloves, wash the gloves, too. Don’t chance the milk going bad. Put the almonds and salt (to help preserve it; I don’t know how it will last without it, and it won’t taste salty) in the blender. The almonds need to be room temperature, or your yield will drop. Add the boiling water. Let sit one minute.
While the almonds, salt, and boiling water sit (we’re softening them up and hopefully killing any stray nasties), pour the other bit of boiling water over whatever cloth you’ve decided to use and your glass containers. Swirl the water to get the sides and rim. Pour out. Add three cups of water to the blender, and turn on high. Blend for one minute.
Turn off the blender, and carefully pour the thick mixture into your bag or t-shirt over the large measuring cup. It will be HOT!! Use gloves if you are sensitive to heat. The amount you pour will vary, depending on the volume you made and size of the bag. This picture shows about half.
VERY gently squeeze the bag. If you are too aggressive at first, the almond solids can literally burst through the seams or the fabric. Squeeze until you feel the majority of milk is in the measuring cup. Pour that milk into your clean glass container. Add more of the almond water mix, if you have any remaining. Gently squeeze again. Pour into the glass container(s). Repeat until there’s no more almond mix. Pour some of the remaining water in the blender to get every bit off the sides and pour it over the solids in your bag. Now, pour the remaining water through the almond pulp, in whatever proportion works best, and pour that into your glass container. It’s okay to be agressive at this point. Use those muscles. We want to get every last drop!
Once you feel you’ve gotten all that you can, wash out the blender container. The next step is to add the xanthan gum. If you’re like us and use 16 cups of water, this will be done in two batches. Since there is less almond and more water with each progressive squeeze, we make sure to mix all of our glass containers equally into the blender, so none of the bottles are watery. Don’t worry about being exact, just do the best you can.
Alright, your blender should be full of almond milk. Sprinkle the xanthan gum over the top. If you are doing the full recipe, this will be 1/4 teaspoon. Put the lid on and blend on the lowest setting for one minute. Any higher, and you’ll make a frothy mess. Pour proportionally into your glass container(s). See photo below. Pour the remaining milk into the blender. Add the xanthan gum. Blend on the lowest setting for one minute. Fill your containers.
As you can see, there might be a little more than you initially intended. A bonus to drink first, since you probably did not pour boiling water over the container. Refrigerate. Use within a week. Most of all, ENJOY!
Hello, and happy Friday! Anyone else remember the 80s band called Dramarama? They had this fab song, so I honestly can’t tell you why I wasn’t a fan at the time.
Anyhoo, the title refers to my own bit of drama. Seven days before my surgery, I had a sandal malfunction on the back steps and blew out my knee, again. It happened so quickly, and I fell so hard, life-alert style, that I could not get up. Luckily, I made quite a painful roar, so Greg was out to help me in short order.
I’m glad we didn’t get rid of the crutches or knee brace the last time, so I was able to get around without much of a problem. Also, how cute is my sweet nursemaid?
Thankfully, my injury wasn’t nearly as bad as last time; because, let me tell you, I was worried my surgery might need to be postponed, and I did not want that. I kept it elevated, iced, and diligently used my crutches. I only need a stretchy bandage now, for a little extra support. Hooray!
As for the surgery, it was last Thursday and really could not have gone better. My wonderful surgeon, Dr. Allen Tanner should you need the same, was whiz-bang quick, only taking twenty five minutes! I recovered in the hospital for a couple of hours before heading home with my champion bestie of besties and fine chauffeur, Greg.
I am very grateful that the pain was manageable enough that I only needed narcotics for a couple days. My incisions, four in total, are quite hideous, and do not feel great to the touch, but are healing nicely and very much starting to itch!! I still cannot cough or sneeze without great pain and fear of everything ripping open, but I have been able to laugh heartily, on occasion. I have also ventured out on dog walks the last three days. I come home exhausted, but it’s progress!
And now, to the sweetest bit, the flowers! Greg bought the top bunch for me, and the lovely roses are from my sweet neighbor, Corinne. I would also like to express my sincerest thanks, however unlikely they will ever read this post, to Jack, Brenda, Julie, Dr. Grady, Stephanie, Genesis, Liz, Malinda, and every other hospital staffer whose name I did not catch, but was essential to my care. Thanks too, to my friends and family who have called and texted their best wishes. I am definitely feeling the love!
We’re all a little weird. And life is a little weird. And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness—and call it love—true love.