Soy milk is a standard in a lot of vegan and vegetarian households, and it seems that the non dairy milk section in the grocery store grows bigger and bigger every year. Several popular brands of soy milk contain 5-10 ingredients and are fortified with Vitamin A, D, and several B vitamins. In addition to fortifiers, there is sometimes carregeenan, a seaweed based stabilizer and texturizer which may also be carcinogenic.
Pure soymilk contains soy beans, water, a pinch of salt and sometimes a bit of sugar. Making soymilk at home is fun, easy and gives you the opportunity to flavour it however you like. If you do not own a soymilk machine, you can simply create this with a blender, cheesecloth or muslin, a soup pot, and a strainer.
One cup dried, organic soybeans
2 cups filtered water
pinch of salt
sugar (to taste)
optional (ginger, vanilla, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, pandan, other extracts etc.)
Method: Soak soybeans in the filtered water for at least 8 hours. Drain, pick out all stones, twigs and discoloured beans, rinse and discard the water. Place the soybeans in a blender and cover them with water, until the blender is filled. Blend for several minutes until the beans have been pulped.
Lay a double layer of cheesecloth or muslin over a strainer and place over a soup pot. Little by little, pour the pulped soybeans over the cheesecloth, and squeeze out all remaining liquid until the beans are more or less dry, and the milk is in the pot. (The pulp can be saved and eaten as a delicious, high protein meal called “okara”. I will post recipes in the future.)
Add salt, and optional flavouring to the milk and simmer for 15 minutes. It is important to constantly stir, and to not let this overboil. Remove ginger and pandan leaves (if you use them) add sugar when still hot, and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate. At this point you can drink it, cook with it, or turn it into homemade tofu! Its flavour will vary depending on your additives, but you will notice that it tastes nothing like a commercially available soymilk. It has a heavy “green” flavour, which really makes me wonder what really goes on in a soymilk factory.