Almond Milk is a staple in our house. It gets used in curries, sauces, baking, breads, chai and more. It is creamy enough for most uses and works beautifully as a dairy milk substitute.
I use blanched almonds for a less prominent almond flavor in the milk, which works beautifully in Masala Chai, Coffee, Lattes, smoothies, curries and vegan almond milk based cheeses. Blanched almond milk can be strained through a regular strainer. Much easier to clean too. just scoop the pulp using a spoon, rinse the strainer and done. I don’t often make almond milk at home, because of the shelf life and because of easy availability of packaged milk, but when I do, this is how I make mine. Ha! The process works pretty much exactly with raw unpeeled almonds as well.
Almond milk from blanched almonds works so much better in chai (Spiced milk tea/chai latte) or coffee. The blanched almonds give a less intense almond flavor to the milk. If you use the almond milk often for heated concoctions or in curries. add 2 raw cashews per 1/2 cup almonds while soaking. This creamier almond milk works great for a whole milk sub for chai tea and vegan almond milk based cheeses.
The problem I have with homemade almond milk is the strong almond-y taste which can become even more prominent in a beverage such as boiled chai tea or almond milk based smoothies and milk shakes. In the pursuit of the favorite and perfect morning chai (which is a a morning must for many Indians), I decided to try blanched almonds to make the almond milk. And believe you me, it makes a world of difference. Thankfully, I do not necessarily have to blanch the almonds and peel each by hand as Blanched Almonds are also available to buy packaged. 🙂 There is an easy way below to blanch them if you need to. I also prefer not touching the nut milk bag to do all the squeezing. I have a pomeranian in the house, nuff said.
I make creamier milk with less water to use in my chai or coffee and to make almond milk yogurt (from my book). Add more or less water to preferred consistency.
Soak the almonds. Both blanched and raw pictured.
Drain completely. Then pour boiling water on the almonds and let sit for 5 minutes. This helps soften up the almonds even more for blending. Drain and wash and transfer to a blender.
Blend with 1 to 1.5 cups of water.
Strain through a regular strainer or cheesecloth lined sieve or nut milk bag for milk made with blanched almonds. Much easier to clean too. just scoop the pulp using a spoon, rinse the strainer and done.
Drain through a nut milk bag or cheesecloth lined sieve for milk made with unpeeled almonds.
Save the pulp for Cherry almond thumbprint cookies. or add to curries.
Pulp from 1/2 cup blanched almonds and 1/2 cup raw unpeeled almonds.
Drink up or store for 4 to 5 days.
- 1/2 cup blanched almonds or raw almonds
- 1.5 to 2 cups water
- a tiny pinch of salt
- sweetener to taste
Soak the almonds in enough water overnight. I keep them on the counter for a few hours and then refrigerate.
Drain and wash the almonds. Add boiling water to the bowl and let sit for 5 minutes.
Drain, wash, add the almonds to the blender. Add 1 cup water.
Blend for a few minutes for 2-3 cycles. Add 1/2 to 1 cup more water + salt + sweetener. Blend blend. I usually add 1/2 cup to make a creamy almond milk to use in chai or coffee. Add more water to preferred consistency.
If using blanched almonds, you can strain the almond milk through a strainer or cheesecloth lined sieve or nut milk bag. Use a spoon to press when the strainer is full, remove pulp from the strainer and strain the remaining milk.
If using unpeeled almonds, strain through a nut milk bag or cheesecloth lined sieve. Squeeze to remove as much milk as possible.
Use the pulp to add creaminess to any of the Indian curries, soups or Dals. Or make almond pulp cookies,
Store in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days. If you don't use up the milk within 4 or 5 days, freeze into ice cubes to use to add to smoothies, curries etc, or make almond milk yogurt from my cookbook.
To blanch unpeeled almonds: Drain the soaked almonds. Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil. Blanch/boil the soaked almonds in boiling water for 1 minute. Then immediately wash in cold water. The almond skin will crinkle. Squeeze each almond lightly from one end. The almonds should shoot out from the other end. Watch out! Peel all the almonds and proceed to step 3.
Nutritional values based on one cup