There’s nothing like ringing in the holiday season with some eggnog. With a base of eggs, cream, or milk, traditional eggnog is decidedly not vegan. But last December, nostalgia swept me into the holiday, and I felt compelled to make vegan eggnog.
[caption id="attachment_1618" align="alignnone" width="640"] Eggnog in Mason Jar[/caption]
Luckily, the world is full of vegans who love tinkering with recipes – and so I found a blog called Elana’s Pantry, with a great recipe for vegan eggnog:
This eggnog is smooth, creamy, and well-spiced. A taste of the holidays in a glass!
[caption id="attachment_1617" align="alignnone" width="640"] Close up Eggnog[/caption]
This could be the first time ever that all of the necessary ingredients were already stocked in my kitchen. Most are typical – almonds, agave, vanilla, and spices. The outlier was Yacon syrup. Yacon syrup is a sweetener made from the South American Yacon root. It tastes like molasses and can be used in cooking and baking. I had used it once before for an icing recipe and was excited to try it again.
[caption id="attachment_1621" align="alignnone" width="640"] Vegan Eggnog Ingredients[/caption]
As I researched Yacon syrup for this post, I was surprised to learn about its potential health benefits. Yacon syrup has a low glycemic index, is relatively low in calories, contains beneficial bacteria, and may help to control appetite and food cravings. It may also help with the absorption of dietary minerals and increase the efficiency of the immune system.
The recent explosion of articles on Yacon Syrup is a result of Dr. Oz. On November 4, 2013, the great and powerful Oz featured the syrup on his show as a possible weight loss tool. To see this episode, click on:
Now back to the recipe! The first step is to place the almonds in a bowl and cover them completely with water.
[caption id="attachment_1612" align="alignnone" width="640"] Almonds Soaking[/caption]
The almonds absorb quite a bit of water while they are soaking. Then combine the almonds and the water in the blender until smooth.
[caption id="attachment_1613" align="alignnone" width="640"] Soaked Almonds[/caption]
It is then time to strain the mixture through a nut milk bag. I use the Amazing Nut Milk Bag pictured below. The one-gallon, oval shaped nylon bag is sturdy, reusable, and easy to clean.
I have also heard of people using a cheese cloth to strain nut milk, but I have no personal experience with the cloth.
[caption id="attachment_1614" align="alignnone" width="640"] Straining Almond Milk[/caption]
The fine mesh of the nut milk bag allows only the liquid to pass through, leaving you with smooth, creamy almond milk. Don’t want to waste the almond meal that accumulates in the nut milk bag? No problem. You can dehydrate the almond meal to create almond flour. There are also recipes that specifically call for almond meal as an ingredient! (The Fussy Fork plans to post one such recipe in the near future.)
[caption id="attachment_1615" align="alignnone" width="640"] Almond Milk with Almond Pulp[/caption]
It’s then time to combine the remainder of the ingredients with the almond milk.
[caption id="attachment_1623" align="alignnone" width="640"] Combining Vegan Eggnog Ingredients[/caption]
I love this vegan eggnog. It heralds the holiday season. And of course, if you want to take it up a notch, try adding some spiced rum!
[caption id="attachment_1619" align="alignnone" width="640"] Eggnog with Radiating Candy Canes[/caption]
- 3 cups almonds
- 4 cups water
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons agave nectar
- 2 tablespoons yacon syrup
- 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
- ¼ ground cinnamon
- pinch of ground cloves
- soak almonds for 8 hours or overnight
- discard soaking water and rinse almonds with fresh water
- put soaked almonds and water in blender
- blend for at least 90 seconds
- pour mixture into nut milk bag and strain
- set aside almond pulp
- pour almond milk into blender and add vanilla, agave nectar, yacon syrup, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves
- blend for 10 seconds
- enjoy immediately or store in refrigerator