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Almond milk was used as a milk substitute in the Middle Ages. It's easy to make your own today using ground almonds and water.
The history of almond milk dates back to the Middle Ages. Before refrigeration, the best way to preserve milk was to make butter or cheese. If a cook wanted to use fresh milk in a recipe, they had to have access to a cow, goat, or other milk producing animal. They couldn't trust milk purchased in the marketplace, which might be watered down or spoiled.
Unlike animal milk, milk made from ground nuts steeped in water was easy to produce and did not readily spoil. Cooks could store almonds for long periods of time, only making them into almond milk when necessary. Like animal milk, however, almond milk has a high fat content. This meant that it could be used to make butter.
One popular dish using almond milk was blancmange, a pudding with Arabic origins. Early European versions were made with almond milk, rosewater, and chicken or other poultry. Modern blancmange is a sweet pudding flavored with almonds, although with a base of milk or cream and usually thickened with gelatin.
As lactose intolerance is increasingly becoming a problem, many people are looking for milk alternatives to add to their diet. Milk alternatives often include rice milk, soya milk and almond milk. The benefits of adding almond milk to your diet include the fact that it not only tastes great, but almond milk is also extremely healthy and very good for you. It is an excellent source of unsaturated fat (which is the good type), it contains good levels of vitamins and minerals, and may even help with weight loss.
High in protein and omega fatty acids, almond milk contains no cholesterol or saturated fat, and has high levels of vitamin E, zinc, magnesium, potassium, calcium and iron. Other benefits of almond milk are that it only contains 70 calories for eight fluid ounces. Although it has no fiber, almond milk is low in carbohydrates and high in protein, so ideal for anyone following a low carbohydrate diet. Studies have also shown almonds can help with weight loss if they are eaten in moderation.
Almond milk contains excellent levels of calcium, magnesium and vitamin D. These all work together to help prevent osteoporosis as we get older. Several studies have shown the importance of taking these supplements together to counteract the effects of bone degeneration as we age. Some recent research also suggests these three in combination may also be a factor in preventing the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
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1 pint strawberries, clean, hulled and sliced
3 bananas, peeled and sliced
1 cup almond milk
1 tablespoon sugar
Blend together strawberries, bananas, almond milk and sugar. Chill before serving. Enjoy!