Discovery Cashewmilk

by Julia Recker

I’m over you, winter.
Birds return and days are longer. I feel so vitamin D deprived and can’t wait to spend more time outside. But this is also the time during which we are prone to catch a spring flu easily. 
This vegan cashew shake may help you to persist the last few days until you carefreely can quit wearing those thick socks and warming winter scarf.
Cashewmilk (or plant milk in general) was always something I wanted to make but I never did. I thought it would be too complicated. I even bought a nut bag last year in Bali with every intention to try it one day. Well, this day has happened last week and I’m trilled to share my discovery with you:
In fact, making your own nut milk in total takes approx. 3 minutes. 
I have always been vegetarian and also had some experiences with vegan lifestyle but I don’t like all those restricted diets that are so common in these times. Living in the Netherlands and ignoring cheese sounds like an impossible challenge. The Netherlands are known for its gigantic cheese culture and they are proud of it. Every year they produce about 650 million kilograms of cheese. And believe me, they know what they’re doing! Apparently archaeological digs testify that cheese has already been produced here thousand years ago, haha. 
Missing this huge part of this country would definitely be stupid.
So I enjoy dairy products from time to time but base my diet on leafy greens, vegetables, fruit and nuts and try to consume dairy products rarely for health reasons but also to keep those treats special. Playing around with nut milk made me realize:
Living without dairy is possible! Wholeheartedly and even in the Netherlands! 
Soaking the nuts is the magical step in this whole procedure. It sets free the complete potential of those powerhouses: The nutritional content of vitamins increases, beneficial enzymes are activated that simplify the digestion and proteins are more readily available. 
I decided to try a strengthening version and included ginger and turmeric. Their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties will boost your immune system. Additionally, I wanted to incorporate something fruity reminding me that warm days are coming. The result is this creamy nourishing drink. The earthiness of the turmeric gets cut a bit from the oranges sour tones, well-rounded with the richness that comes from the cashews.
A further positive characteristic of nut milk is that it is so open to interpretation. Any type of fruit and spices would suite perfectly. For the milk itself you can use any type of nuts and seeds but I find that cashew works best and achieves the creamiest result. I also thought about a savory variant. But let’s start with this one first:
Creamy tumeric-orange Cashewtreat
serves approx. 750 ml nut milk (depending on the size of your cup)
1 cup nuts (soaked overnight in ginger water)
3 cups filtered water
2 small pieces fresh ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp tumeric
1 orange (juiced)
agave to adjust the sweetness (optional)

Soak the nuts over night (at least for 7 hours) in a cup covered with cooled ginger water (add 2 pieces of fresh ginger to 1 liter boiling water, let cool before using). Rinse the nuts and blend together with three cups of filtered water. Place a nut bag or cheesecloth over a large jar (an ordinary pantyhose works just the same) and strain the milk through the nut bag. Squeeze out the last drops of milk. Add orange juice, cinnamon and turmeric and adjust the sweetness using agave. Keep refrigerated, consume within three days.
There are so many advantages of making your own nut milk. It is sugar-, additive- and preservative-free and not only it saves money but with the mashed nut left overs you can create incredibly delicious spreads (adding shredded beetroot, carrots or capsicum, a little olive oil and fresh herbs) or dry it and use as flour. Win win!
Let me know how you like it and what your favorite combo is! 

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