Sunday, October 2, 2011

Homemade Rice Milk

It's a long story as to why I'm drinking rice milk, but suffice it to say that I believe it's healthier. I don't drink milk for calcium -- in fact, cow's milk isn't really a great source of calcium. In reality, our bodies only absorb about 25% of the calcium available from cow's milk.

But that's a story for another day...

Originally I was drinking Rice Dream when I wanted rice milk. But there are two things I've discovered that I don't like. One: it's not organic. Two: I've seen evidence that Monsanto owns stock in the company that manufactures the product, and I do my best not to knowingly support Monsanto.

So ... I found an online recipe that looked good and made my own!

It really was easy. You take a cup of organic rice:

Wash it thoroughly and put it in a pan with 8 cups of boiling water:

Simmer it for three hours (yes... I said THREE HOURS) until it looks like this:

Then you put it in your blender -- half of the rice mixture plus half additional water (I did two cups rice mixture and two cups of water) and blend:

Eventually, you'll have this (it's a HUGE bowl -- 16 cups -- of pureed rice and water ... "rice milk"). Note how brown it is? I didn't think it would ever actually look like cow's milk at this point.

Strain it twice. I strained it into the blender the first time, then poured it through the strainer from the blender into a pitcher for the last strain.

Here's what's left after you strain:

And HERE is what's left after the second straining -- beautiful, white milk:

So there you have it ... how to make a nice, healthy gallon of rice milk.

The part that was the hardest was straining it ... took me nearly an hour. But it's worth it. This is thicker than the Rice Dream milk (one of my complaints about rice milk was that it was watery) and my next thing will be to add just a little cocoa and honey to make chocolate milk for my coffee.

Happy drinking!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Spinach... It's What's for Breakfast

For the past many, many weeks, I've been drinking a smoothie for breakfast. I've been reading about incorporating greens into my diet, especially spinach (and kale ... but I'm just not a fan). One way is with a "green smoothie". Most green smoothies recommend all greens, plus a banana to help with the bitterness, but I can't eat bananas.

I also wanted to get other things in my diet as well, including broccoli, cucumber and blueberries. The thing is, all of these foods need to be WELL chewed before swallowing in order to get all the benefits. We humans tend to put things in our mouth, chew once or twice and then swallow. That's not going to cut it. Think about it: have you ever watched a cow or horse eat? They take a mouthful of grass or hay and chew, and chew, and chew, and chew ...

There's a saying: "Eat what you drink and drink what you eat." It basically means, make sure everything is totally liquified before you swallow.

I decided to make things easier and do the chewing with my blender. *G*

I've had more than one person tell me that the thought of blending spinach, cucumbers and broccoli into a fruit smoothie turns their stomachs. Fact is, folks, you can barely even tell they're there! What an easy way to eat your veggies.

Here's what I do. I gather my ingredients (I usually also add ground flaxseed, but I'm out), in today's case a carrot, an apple, a cucumber, some blueberries, broccoli, spinach and a bit of yogurt and OJ (with pulp). You can vary the fruits a bit if you'd like, for different flavors:

I buy organic as much as possible because I leave all the skins on (that's where most of the nutrition is, after all):

I fill the blender to the brim, because spinach is one of those mysterious foods that loses volume the moment you do anything to it, including blend it:

Then I blend. I usually have to stop a few times to stir it up. But eventually, I end up with this:

Want a peek in the top?

YUM... pour and drink:

I dare you to give it a try. Your body will love you for it.