Chai Spiced Milk and DIY Plant-Milk Tips

Chai Spiced Milk and DIY Plant-Milk Tips
chai spiced milk and DIY plant-milk tips

I’m still celebrating World Plant-Milk Day (or Week, as the case may be). If you’re new to the event, and wondering what I’m talking about, then catch my post from earlier this week. If you’re ready for some advice on making your own plant milk, then read on.

Tips for the best homemade plant-milk:

  • The ratio for making nut or seed milk is 1 part nuts/seeds to 3 parts water. Use less water if you desire a thicker, richer beverage.
  • Soaking the nuts or seeds beforehand makes them easier to digest and softens them for blending.
  • Storing pre-soaked nuts or seeds in the freezer allows you to make milk at a moment’s notice.
  • You can strain your blended nut/seed milk with a nut milk bag. (I’ve heard that paint strainer bags also work but I haven’t tried them). Alternatively, use cashews as your base because they blend in fully and don’t need to be strained out.
  • Homemade plant-milk stored in the fridge between 35 and 41ºF should last up to 5 days (according to VeganMilker).

You can make plant-milk as neutral-tasting as possible so it can be used in sweet or savory dishes. But it’s also fun to add flavorings to the blender for an instant, delicious beverage. Being a huge fan of chai lattes, I like adding chai spices to my milk and either heating it on the stove or adding ice for cool refreshment.

Chai Spiced Milk

3.5 cups water (filtered is best), divided
1 cup raw cashews
4-5 pitted dates
1/8 teaspoon clove powder
1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder
1/4 teaspoon ginger powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder, optional
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch sea salt

Boil 3 cups of water. Add the cashews to a bowl and cover with 1 cup boiled water. Add the dates to a small bowl and cover with 1 cup boiled water. Add the spice powders to a small bowl and cover with 1 cup boiled water. Let the three bowls sit for at least 30 minutes, or up to 1 hour.

Strain the cashews and add them to the jug of a high-speed blender. Add the dates and their soaking water to the blender. Add the spiced water to the blender. Add the vanilla, salt, and remaining 1/2 cup water to the blender. Blend on high until smooth and frothy.

Serve over ice, or gently heat in a pot on the stove over medium-low heat until warm. Serves 2.

Until next time, happy non-baking!

Strawberry-Rhubarb Crumble

strawberry rhubarb crumble

strawberry rhubarb crumble

Rhubarb. I opened up my farm box and that’s what stared back at me. Of course I had heard of rhubarb before but I had never tried it. Not knowing what it tasted like meant I didn’t know what to do with it. I had seen rhubarb recipes before but they were for jam (with lots and lots of sugar) or for pie (and I don’t like pie – it’s a crust thing). So I began an extensive search on the vegetable.

The recipe that finally caught my eye was for a crumble. I was intrigued by the fact that it contained turmeric, that anti-inflammatory herb that has received so much press lately. Another ingredient in the recipe got my attention – the lack of refined sugar. I had found a recipe for a healthy and delicious dessert that I could easily modify.

The changes I made were simple. First off I adapted it to include my star ingredient – rhubarb. Next, I decided that this dish should contain some healthy fat in the form of coconut oil. Why add fat? Well, the crumble seemed like it would make a nice breakfast. It had protein, fruit and fiber, but it needed a little fat to round it out. Here it is, ready for breakfast or dessert.

Strawberry-Rhubarb Crumble adapted from OrganicConnectMag.com
¼ cup + 2 TBS maple syrup, divided
1 TBS dried ground turmeric
2 cups diced rhubarb
2 cups hulled and quartered strawberries
1 cup almond flour
2 TBS cold coconut oil
¼ cup almonds, chopped
¼ cup walnuts, chopped
1 tsp cinnamon
⅛ tsp nutmeg
⅛ tsp sea salt
Preheat oven to 375 F. Lightly grease an 8×8” baking dish. In a bowl, combine ¼ cup maple syrup and turmeric. Add rhubarb and strawberries and toss to coat. Add mixture to baking dish. In a bowl, combine almond flour, 2 TBS maple syrup, and coconut oil. Mix in almonds, walnuts, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Evenly spread topping over mixture in baking dish, breaking up clumps as you go. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes, until berries are bubbling and topping is golden. Serve warm.

Until next time, happy baking!