Date Sweetened Vanilla Cashew Milk
Hello everyone I hope you are having a great Saturday, or as I like to call it, Game of Thrones Eve (hahaha! I know I know). I decided to skip the farmers market this weekend to get a jump on some more recipe testing, working on blog posts and preparing for the presentation I'm giving at the Obesity Help Conference in October, which I hope to see all of you there! Next week is also my last week off before returning to work (my nursing gig) after a very long recovery from a neurosurgery that I had back in March. I wanted to let you know that because of returning to work, meeting my deadline for the presentation and still trying to give you a recipe once a week, after this post today, they will be shorter and right to the point until I can balance out my work flow, health and other working commitments. What you can expect is just a quick hello and then it's right to the recipe. I thank you for your understanding in advance and I'm hoping it won't take me too long to figure out how to balance all of it!. So, with that out of the way let's move on to the cashew milk recipe shall we?
It's pretty common for gastric bypass patients to become sensitive or intolerant to most dairy products after surgery, and unfortunately, along with many others, I am one of them. High quality dairy can be very beneficial if you can tolerate it. I eat grass fed organic cheese at home, but limit my intake because I have two auto immune diseases (eczema and Raynaud's) that do better with a limited dairy intake. Luckly, there are a variety of non-dairy milk options for us, from almond, hemp, coconut and my favorite, cashew milk. You can easily and convieniently purchase these prepared milks at most grocery stores and there are a few outstanding brands that have excellent tasting "clean milk." But, just like with everything reading your labels is important! A few major grocery store brands still add thickeners and other ingredients to these store bought milks, and for some people they can cause some digestive issues. I will link some articles from Chris Kressor and The Paleo Mom for you to read and make your own decisions on if these thickeners are something you want to avoid all together or allow in limited amounts.
- 2 cups of raw soaked cashews
- 3 dates, pitted (leave them out if you want unsweetened)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract (omit if you want plain cashew milk)
- pinch of sea salt (or to taste)
- 5 cups filtered water
- In a large dish or Mason jar add the raw cashews and add enough filtered water to cover them. Let cashews soak for up to 8 hours. I put mine in the fridge.
- Empty and change out your water at least half way through.
- After 8 hours drain and rinse the cashews and put them in a high powered blender.
- Take the dates and remove the pits, put them in a bowl that can withstand boiling/hot tap water.
- Boil enough water to fully submerge the dates, once the water comes to a boil carefully pour the water over the dates and let them soak for 5-10 minutes. This helps to soften the dates so they blend easier.
- Drain the water (remove the pits if you haven’t already!) and add dates to the blender.
- Add the vanilla, salt and water.
- Put the lid on the blender and blend until incorporated. I have a Vitamix so this is very fast, about 3 minutes I’m guessing.
At this point you can use a nut milk bag to “filter/strain” out the very fine left over cashew pulp, but this is not necessary. I have used a nut milk bag and find that I like to filter it through before I transfer the cashew milk to large covered glass containers. If you don’t filter it through the nut milk bag the cashew milk will be thicker and have a fine “grainy” feel but it’s still good just pour it directly into your containers with a lid and keep it in the fridge. You will notice that it will separate as it sits, just give it a shake and you’re good to go! It does this because there isn’t any junky thickeners/binders to keep it from separating.
The less powerful the blender the longer it may take to blend and the more “pulp” will be left.
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