Saturday, July 18, 2009

Nut Butters into Nut Milks!

I'm not a fan of cow milk. I'm allergic to it, for one, and I think it tastes bad for another (I think part of the allergy is an aversion; I can't tell the difference between fresh milk and bad milk by smell-- it all smells bad to me), plus, it's full of unhealthy things that I'd rather not attack my thyroid with.

Soymilk is tasty, especially the asian beverage kinds, but it's soy, and soy is full of estrogens that my body gest way-too-easily hooked on. Almond is good, but sometimes hard to find and / or expensive, and rice milk tastes watery, and like the bowl after you've had Rice Krispies.

So when I read that you can take pretty much any nut butter and make it into milk, I was thrilled! We've got a scratch and dent grocery here, and there's always leftover health-food-store nutbutters at, like, 1.50 instead of 5.99, so I got myself some cashew butter and some sunbutter (made of sunflower seeds, which I actually like better than peanut butter these days).

Here's how it goes:
2 cups of water
1/4 cup of nutbutter, all natural and not emulsified-- so look for the kind that separates, and stir it up before you use it
1-2 tbsp sugar
a pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract

You're supposed to blenderize it here, but ours was on a shelf I couldn't reach and it was during a thunderstorm anyway, so I put it all in a jar and shook it like I was making butter out of milk. In the blender, it's, like, two minutes or something until it's a milk-- the color lightens and the solids are mostly dissolved. In the jar, it's more like fifteen or twenty minutes of vigorous shaking, which is good exercize and kind of zone-out and zen time. It won't lighten so much, and it won't be as thick, but it's prefectly drinkable and just as tasty. Either way, there'll be sediment-- all the fibers that are fine on a sandwich, but kind of gross to drink. If you let it sit for a minute, they'll settle out, and you can pour off the tasty tasty drinkables. The fiber is good for the compost heap.

Cashew milk tastes alot like soymilk, but without that cardoboardy after taste that soymilk tends to have, and without that feeling of dryness in your mouth. Roasted cashew butter is nuttier, but still mild. It's harder to mix by hand, though, because there's more solids in it. Sunmilk smells a little odd, but tastes great, creamy and smooth and like a sunflower seed, but also with that milkiness you're looking for, and after you sip it, the smell isn't even an issue-- it just smells like sunbutter.

Next trip to the scratch and dent, I'm going to pick up some tahini and try sesame milk-- I think it'll be awesome, and starting from a smaller, softer source, it should be easier to mix. And I really want to try hazelnut milk-- or even just hazelnut butter-- but it's usually expensive, even at the discount grocery, and it's not always there. I might also try peanut milk if I can find some good, natural peanut butter-- Jiff and PeterPan just have too much hydrogentated veggie oil these days, and don't even taste like much to me anymore. And they won't blend well.

No comments: