Organic Cashew Milk - Two Ways!
Homemade nut and seed milks are not only incredibly pure, refreshing and delicious, they are extremely easy to make! The beautiful thing about nut and seed milks, like juicing, is that by extracting the fibre, you are left with a nutrient-dense beverage made very bio-available to the body. This means the nutrients are quickly and easily absorbed into the bloodstream. In the case of organic nuts and seeds, you're getting double-whammy: high-quality protein AND a high-quality source of fat! YES!
For any nut or seed milk, the standard ratio involves 1 cup nut/seeds to 4 cups water. Simply reduce the water volume if you'd like it to become creamier in texture and more concentrated in flavour (i.e. 3 cups water).
1 cup organic, raw cashews (soaked minimum 2 hours - overnight)
4 cups filtered water
A high-speed blender (I used a Vitamix)
A nut/seed milk bag or piece of cheesecloth (nut/seed milk bags should be available at your local health food store and typically cost between $5-$10).
*Yields approximately 1 mason jar (4 cups).
*To view some visuals of this process with a 'Date-Cardamom Almond Milk' from a past blog post, click here!
1. Soak 1 cup of raw cashews in a bowl of filtered water overnight, so that they are more easily blended the next day in your high-speed blender.
2. Drain and rinse the cashews prior to using them.
3. Combine 4 cups water and the cashews in your high-speed blender, adding the water to the blender first (to maintain the longevity of the blades and motor).
4. Blend the mixture until smooth.
5. Pour the mixture into a nut/seed milk bag that has been placed into an ample-sized mixing bowl or 8-cup, glass measuring cup with a spout.
6. Gently squeeze the nut/seed milk bag until all fluid has seeped through and only the fibre remains. With cashews, I tend to find that there is very little fibre left in the bag, once the milk is strained and separated from the solid material.
Store the milk in a tightly-sealed mason jar in the fridge if not consuming it immediately. The milk will last for 4-5 days in the fridge, so plan to use it fairly soon after creation so that it doesn't go to waste. It will require a good shake upon consuming, as it will separate into its constituent parts upon sitting for some period of time in the refrigerator.
The leftover fibre that remains in the bag is just that - fibre. The nutrients have all been extracted so it is just bulk. You may compost it or use it in a smoothie, but please keep in mind that it is flavourless and is not providing any nutritional value to whatever recipe you may choose to add it to thereafter.
Flavour Variation #1: Raw Cacao-Vanilla
Combine 2 of the 4 cups yield with 1 heaping tsp. raw cacao powder and 1/2 tsp. vanilla and blend thoroughly.
Flavour Variation #2: Turmeric-Cinnamon
Combine the other 2 cups of the 4 cups yield with 1 heaping tsp. turmeric powder and 1/4 tsp. cinnamon and blend thoroughly.