Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Homemade Almond Milk

Non-dairy milks, such as soy, rice, coconut, hemp, oat and almond are growing in popularity.

These plant-based alternatives are easier for the body to digest, compared to cow’s milk, as they don’t contain lactose. And, some even have added health benefits. For example, almond milk, is high in Vitamin E, Magnesium and Potassium.

While you can purchase milk substitutes at nearly any grocery store, I prefer to make my own. The end result is smooth, silky and just a touch sweet.

1 Cup Raw Almonds
3 Cups Filtered Water
¼ Teaspoon Coconut Oil
¼ Teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract

Blender (Vitamix)
Nut Milk Bag (or cheesecloth)

Place the raw almonds in a small bowl and cover with filtered water. Soak the almonds for at least 6 hours, or overnight. The longer the almonds soak, the creamier the milk. When done soaking, drain and rinse the almonds under cold water. Add the almonds to the blender, along with 3 cups filtered water. Blend on high speed for 2 minutes. Turn off the blender, add ¼ teaspoon coconut oil and ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract. Pulse just to combine.

Over a large bowl, pour the contents into the nut milk bag. Twist the bag tightly, and gently press all the milk from the almond meal (the almond meal will be dry and remain inside the bag).

Store the almond milk in a tightly sealed container for up to 3 days. But believe me, it won’t last that long! I love to mix this milk into fruit smoothies and it’s delicious with Cold Brew Coffee.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Slow-Bake Kale Chips

Hello, friends... Wow, I’ve missed you guys! It's been way too long since we've chatted on Ella Modern, and for that, I apologize. The past couple months have flown by so fast, that I can't believe summer is already in full swing! I've got so much to share, so let's jump right back in.

One of my favorite things about our neighborhood this time of year are the weekend Greenmarkets. Stands are set up all along Greenwich Street, showcasing beautiful flowers, fresh fruits and vegetables and there's even fresh fish... but only for the early risers, it sells so fast. 

Greens were in abundance this weekend, so I picked up a giant bunch of Tuscan Kale. I love to use kale for salads because it's a little heartier than ordinary lettuce (and, I highly recommend trying THIS recipe). For something more savory, I also like to make Kale Chips. Yes, that's right, Kale Chips.

I've tried several different recipes, but Gwyneth Paltrow's slow-bake rendition is by far the best, and ensures a crispy chip!

1 Bunch Tuscan Kale, Chopped Into Bite Size Pieces
Olive Oil
Sea Salt

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F. Lightly drizzle the kale with olive oil and toss to coat. Spread kale on a sheet pan in a single layer (you may have to use two sheet pans). Sprinkle with sea salt.  Bake for 1 hour until lightly browned and crisp.