Sunday, 22 January 2012

Easy seed and nut 'milks'

Following on from my super Mayan style chocolate recipe where hemp milk is the main ingredient, I thought I'd share with you my simple seed and nut 'milk' recipe. This is great in all sorts of drinks, smoothies and milkshakes and even on cereal and porridge. Mmmmmmm.

Nut and seed milks are a very nutritious and a delicious alternative to dairy milk but are pretty expensive to buy ready made from the shops. It is much cheaper to make your own, and I think they taste even better this way too.

Our favourite type is hemp seed milk. It has a mild, nutty and slightly sweet flavour that blends easily into recipes and seems popular with children (always a bonus). It is also amazingly good for you being high in omega 3 and 6, rich in amino acids, protein and packed with tons (well not literally tons, but it has alot) of vitamins and minerals.

It is also great for the planet! Hemp is a very sustainable crop that is very resistant to disease and pests, so the use of herbicides and pesticides is greatly reduced or not needed at all, making organic farming of a hemp a dream. Not limited to a food stuff, it can be made into food, fabrics, paper, building materials and fuel, so buy hemp for the environment I say! OK, sorry for going on, here ends my lecture on hemp ;)

Cashew and Brazil nut milks are my other favourites, and (like hemp) do not need soaking overnight which means that you can make the milk right when you need it. You can use pretty much any seeds or nuts to make milk though. We also like to use almonds and sesame seeds which are really full in flavour, but its better to soak these the night before first as this makes them much more digestible.

1 cup seed or nuts of your choice
1 litre filtered or spring water
Pinch of unrefined sea salt
1 tbsp honey or 4 soaked dates (optional)

Blend all together in a blender for a couple of minutes until the water has gone a 'milky' colour. 
Strain this through a nut milk bag or piece of muslin into a clean, deep container (I use a large preserving jar). 
At this point you can sweeten the milk if you choose by blending in the soaked dates or some honey. I usually don't as I use the milk in drinks that will be sweetened anyway, but your may prefer it this way!
I have kept hemp milk in the fridge for 3 days in a preserving jar and it was still wonderfully fresh so it is a great idea to make it in bulk so you have some on hand in the week.


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