03 Mar Homemade Hemp Milk
Many of us are switching to nut and seed milks in an effort to avoid dairy. You just have to check out the milk section in your grocery store for evidence – there’s a huge selection of almond, rice, soy, and cashew milks. This is great…mostly….but unfortunately most commercial seed and nut milks contain the stabilizing agent carrageenan. Carrageenan helps to emulsify and thicken liquids. Unfortunately, it is also pro-inflammatory. This is not good. Inflammation has been clearly linked to heart disease, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and cancer. Wouldn’t you know it? Just when you think you’re doing a good thing by cutting back on dairy, you’re hit in the head with a hammer about another health concern – sheesh!
The good news to all of this, however, is that it’s ridiculously easy to make your own nut/seed milk and much less expensive, too!
I experimented a little over the weekend trying to replicate the boys’ favourite vanilla almond milk. While making almond milk isn’t hard, to do it properly requires soaking raw almonds at least 8 hours. Not being known for being my organizational skill, this extra step often throws me off…I need my milk now, not in 8 hours!
This is where the beauty of hemp seeds comes in. Shelled hemp seeds (hearts) are soft and blend easily. They blend so well that you don’t even need to strain the milk through a nut-milk bag…although you could if you’re super keen. It takes literally seconds to make (quicker for sure than hopping in your car and driving to the grocery store).
This milk would make a great base for smoothies, could even froth well for your favourite latte, and is nice with cereal. Of course you could modify and reduce the number of pitted dates to reduce the sweetness….but why would you want to? If you prefer a thicker milk, simply reduce the amount of water,….if you prefer a thinner milk….simply add water or reduce the amount of hemp hearts.
Sue’s Hemp Milk
4 cups filtered water
1/2 cup hemp seeds
6 pitted Medjool dates
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
Blend above ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth. I used a Vita-mix. If you wish, you can pour mixture through a nut milk bag; however, this blends so well it really isn’t necessary. Store in air-tight container in fridge for up to 3 to 4 days. Mixture will separate (because there’s no nasty carrageenan), so you should give it a nice shake before pouring. I hope you enjoy!