One reader named Nikki had left a comment about almond milk, it’s something I like to drink now because it lacks that animal-scent you get with cow’s milk. I’ve never really been a fan of soy milk but almond milk is amazing. Anyway, in the comment she mentioned that it is so easy to make your own, and so I tried it with a small batch of nuts just to test if it was in fact easy. (This is why it’s important that you guys leave useful comments because yes I do read and respond to them even though I may not comment directly, the more you tell me what you want the better it is for you.) And..yes! It was very easy, the most challenging part is finding whole blanched almonds. At whole foods you can find them in very small packages but you need a lot of nuts to make the milk, so you’ll need a big batch.
But I decided to take it a step further and create scented flavors for the almond milk. It has such a clean base that it’s perfect to flavor it with fresh herbs, I used Vanilla, Black truffle, Rose, Mint, Basil and Cinnamon to scent my milk. What’s great about this is that if you use a real vanilla bean to flavor your almond milk it tastes so much better than the artificially flavored stuff.
Also there is a VERY STRONG taste difference between my fresh almond milk and the milk I buy from stores. The one I made tastes better and creamier, the processed milk has a slightly more almond-y taste, but it’s a little fake tasting after you make your own. The best part is that you can control what you put into this milk.
The rose here really is for styling only, you should try and find culinary roses if you can, even dried roses if you can.
Basic process, buy the almonds, soak them in water overnight, process them, and then run it through a cheesecloth. The recipe is quite flexible, when you process the almond milk, you’ll have to add water otherwise you’ll get almond paste. Anyway, the amount of water you add will just affect how creamy or light your milk is. What I liked to do was to run the grated almonds through the cheesecloth twice because there will still be some milk even though you squeeze out the first round. Recipes call for maple syrup, some sugar…this all depends on how you want to flavor it, I wouldn’t follow a recipe because it really depends on your palette.
Adding the scents to your milk is easy, for the cinnamon I just broke up some whole cinnamon sticks and put it directly into the milk, for the rose I bruised them gently and placed it in the milk, same goes for mint and basil. For the mint I chopped it finely because I wanted a stronger scent. If you just want a light scent just give it a rough chop and put it into the milk. For the black truffle I grated half a truffle. And vanilla, all you have to do is take the seeds out.
I put all the scented milks into the fridge and let it sit for 1 day. That should really be more than enough time to infuse your milk.
You don’t really want to be eating pieces of rose while enjoying your milk so sift these out. It really depends though, on your choice, if you’re into eating roses then leave it. For the vanilla and truffle, I didn’t sift it out because the vanilla seeds are so small anyway, and it would be a waste to throw out the truffles. Basil, mint and cinnamon were all sifted out though.
I also flavored some plain granola to go with the scented almond milk. This one below I flavored with truffle oil. Just drizzle some oil and bake it in the oven for 10 minutes.
And this one with some rock chocolate, for my mint scented almond milk.
The smell is so strong, you don’t even really need labels because you will know what flavor it is just by smelling it.
Truffle granola with black truffle scented milk was great.
Rose milk went with rose flavored granola, garnished with candied roses.
Cinnamon scented milk goes great with raisin bran, but for the basil scented milk I paired it with strawberries. I think out of all the scents the rose milk was my favorite. So fragrant.