Nut Milk

Milk always seems to be a hot topic when discussing health. We've been told since childhood that milk does a body good, right? It's pretty clear that my stance on food is as follows: the closer it is to it's natural state, the better it is for you. So what about pasteurized homogenized milk from sick cows? Doesn't sound all that natural and healthy to me. Raw milk makes a little more sense to me. Our ancestors had their own goats or maybe even a cow and drank it's milk right then and there. But, finding raw milk can be hard these days and lots of people still have reservations about it's safety. I hear ya. It's up to you to do your research on all types of milk and weigh the benefits and risks of them ALL.

Here's a recipe to make nut milk at home. It's so EASY to make and it's DELISH! If you're going paleo or dairy free or have lactose intolerance, this recipe is right up your alley. I used hazlenuts for this recipe but almonds, brazil nuts or macadamias would work just fine also. This is a great alternative to dairy based milks and is a great post workout treat. After making your own nut milks, you'll never buy the packaged stuff in the grocery store again.

1 part nuts
2 to 3 parts water
(optional stevia, cinnamon or vanilla)

How to:
Soak the nuts in water overnight. It softens them and gets them ready for blending. Don't worry about any peelings that may soften or come off of the nuts as they soak.

I prefer to blend in small batches. Add one part nuts and two parts fresh water to a blender and blend until most of the larger pieces are broken down. I blend my milk in a magic bullet with 1/4 c hazelnuts and 1/2 c water.

Set a cheesecloth over a bowl with ample cloth draped over the sides of the bowl. Pour all of the nutmilk into the cheesecloth. Raise up the sides of the cloth to make a baggie with the nut residue in the center. Then "milk" the bag. Squeeze all of the liquid into the bowl beneath and you'll be left with the chopped up nut pieces safely held together in the cheesecloth. Discard cheesecloth and nut leftovers and refrigerate the milk! If the milk needs extra pizzaz, add a little stevia, cinnamon or vanilla to flavor it. I like it plain.

Enjoy the milk with fruit or your favorite smoothie. It hits the spot after a tough workout.

(**I've seen nut milk bags for sale but cheesecloth works just as well and is cheaper. I guess if you're planning on regularly making milk at home, a bag would be a good investment at around $10)