Almond milk is made from almond nuts. The almond tree reaches a height of 3-7 M (9-22 ft) and has beautiful pink or white flowers that bloom in spring. The dry, leathery almond fruit surrounds the almond nut which is harvested when the fruit dries and splits open.
Milk made from almonds has a delicious light nutty flavor, and it makes a refreshing drink straight from the fridge. It can be used just like regular milk, or as a ‘non-dairy milk’ in just about any recipe.
Almonds without their shells can be stored for up to 1 month if kept airtight in a cool dark dry place, or up to a maximum of 12 months in the refrigerator if kept air tight. Almonds can be frozen for 2-3 years depending on temperature.
Almonds are particularly nutritious in protein, iron, vitamin E, zinc, and vitamin B2. They also have valuable amounts of magnesium, potassium, and folate (folic acid). Among the nut family, almonds provide the richest source of calcium.
Almonds contain more magnesium than oatmeal or even spinach, making a valuable contribution to good health: magnesium is needed for healthy bones, and for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Magnesium helps maintain normal muscle and nerve function, keeps heart rhythm steady, and is involved in energy metabolism and protein synthesis. One ounce (about 23 almonds) provides more than a quarter of your daily needs for magnesium.
For weight-conscious people, almond milk is low-fat and low-carbohydrate, and is therefore ideal as part of any weight loss plan. A study carried out by Dr. Gary Fraser (City of Hope Medical Center and Loma Linda University in California) found that eating a modest quantity of almonds daily (approximately 2 ounces or 40 almonds) resulted in increased unsaturated fats intake with no significant changes in body weight.
Making almond milk is quick and easy. It is best to soak the almonds overnight in purified or boiled water (the water must be cold when used for making milk). Then strain, dab nuts dry and freeze. The almonds nuts are then ready for making milk whenever you like. Using soaked/frozen nuts provides a much creamier and more nutritious milk than using dried nuts without first soaking.
To make milk, blend one part of nuts to five parts water. Always use the purest drinking water for making milk; otherwise the milk will spoil quickly. Add a teaspoon of sugar for taste. Better still add a teaspoon of Xylitol (a natural sweetener that protects your teeth and gums). Never use warm or hot water when making milk as this will greatly reduce the shelf life of the milk in the fridge.
Blend the milk for 1 – 2 minutes. There is no need to strain the milk after blending; just store in an airtight container in the fridge and use like regular milk. Shake or stir before serving. It will typically stay fresh for 4-5 days just like regular milk.
For more super delicious and nutritious milk-making recipes see The Foolproof Diet (http://www.the-foolproof-diet.com/).