PUMPKIN NUT MILK
This recipe is great during the winter, especially. Not only does your body crave warmth and comfort, your immunity will be struggling too, so getting as many medicinal spices and super foods into your diet as possible with make an incredible difference to your health. The harsh weather can really shut down your immune system, and with longer periods of darkness your skin can begin to look and feel lifeless. Warm drinks are so comforting and are instant ways to enhance your nutrient intake, instantly. Pumpkin helps you to relax and contributes to sound sleep, so drink this before bed or when you're feeling rundown and it will sooth your mind, body and soul. Alternatively, enjoy it heated up on your Qnola to keep you warm as you hurry out of your sleepwear and into your clothes, trying desperately not to freeze.
1 Cup Raw Almonds or Cashews, soaked
2 Cups Cold Filtered Water
(or you can use pre-made nut milk, or other plant based milks such as hemp or coconut)
1 Cup Pumpkin, Squash or Sweet Potato, cubed
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt
1 Teaspoon Maca Powder
1 Teaspoon Lucuma, optoinal
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Cardamom, Cloves, Ginger, Tumeric
1 Teaspoon Coconut Blossom Nectar or Date Syrup, optional
(your choice of spices - i like using a mixture of chai spices)
You can make this milk in two ways. The easiest way is to make it with pre-made nut milk - whether you have some homemade leftovers or shop bought milk (just be wary of the sugars and additives) - and with steamed pumpkin/squash/sweet potato. The healthiest, slightly more arduous way is to make the milk fresh from scratch, and to juice the vegetables.
Start by steaming your vegetable of choice. When it becomes soft to touch, transfer it into a blender. Measure your milk and add that to the blender, along with the vanilla, maca, lucuma (if using), salt and spices of choice. Blend on a high speed for 2-3 minutes, until the vegetables have disappeared. The milk should be entirely smooth and should be turning a nice golden yellow colour. When everything is combined, pour the milk through a sieve or a nut milk bag or a jam strainer (the nut milk bag or jam strainer will result in a much smoother milk, but a sieve will do). Leave to cool in the fridge, as it will still be lukewarm from the steamed vegetables, or heat in a saucepan and serve as a warm drink.
Start by juicing your vegetables. If you don't have a juicer, you can grate your vegetables into a blender and blend it with twice its amount of water. Then pour it through a sieve or a nut milk bag or a jam strainer. The best way, though, is to juice the vegetables, for the purest, smoothest and more nutritious result. Once the vegetables are juiced, set aside in the fridge whilst you make the nut milk.
Place your nuts of choice into a blender along with the filtered water. Blend for 3-4 minutes until the water turns white and the nuts have dispersed. Pour through a fine sieve, a nut milk bag or a jam strainer into a jug. Wash the blender than pour the milk back in. Add your vanilla, salt, maca, lucuma (if using), spices of choice and your pre-prepared pumpkin, sweet potato or squash juice. Blend for another 1-2 minutes on a high speed, ensuring everything is combined and smooth. Pour through your sieve/nut milk bag/jam strainer for a final time, for the smoothest result.
Serve instantly, as a cold drink, as a hot drink, stirred into coffee, poured over Qnola, used in porridge or baking or store in the fridge for 3-4 days.