Hello beautiful humans,
I am here this evening to share my story with you. The story about how I grew up on a dairy farm and how I found myself here today, getting up early every morning to go and milk the almonds. But in all seriousness, I grew up on a dairy farm that was and still is managed by my parents. I spent a huge amount of time at the farm as it is what my families life largely revolves around. I always had a lot of questions and for the most part, I was much too scared to ask any of them.
“Why do we have to artificially inseminate the cows before they produce milk?”
“What happens to the babies if we want their milk?”
“Do the ‘cups’ hurt the cows when they’re hanging from their udder?”
Seeing these things every day is what got me to hop, skip and jump onto the vegan bandwagon. When I was fifteen, my best friend in school was vegetarian. I spent a lot of time in her company, and at her house, and as a result of that I decided to stop consuming animals. Fast forward a couple of years later, I found myself moving in with a co-worker and her girlfriend – a vegan. I have always been very openminded as well as ready and willing to try new things, so when it was put to me “if you’re vegetarian, why don’t you just go vegan?” and my reaction was quite literally “okay, why not!?” And thus another vegan was born. Now I am that passive aggressive vegan with ‘MEAT IS MURDER” stickers covering the back of my car, and that is okay because maybe it will plant a vegan seed in someone else.
Once I had cut out all animal products and by-products from my diet, I decided to research more about health benefits of veganism as well as the cruelty aspects of a non-vegan lifestyle. It did not take long for all of young Skye’s questions to be answered, and they were certainly not what I had hoped for as a young innocent being, but in all honestly, it was completely what I expected.
“You can’t do anything violent humanely.” -James Wildman
Here are 5 facts that the dairy industry doesn’t want you to know:
- 21,000,000 dairy calves are murdered every single year for veal or cheap beef.
- As all mammals do, dairy cows must give birth in order to produce milk (hence the artificial insemination). Just as humans do, a cow carries her young for 9 months and lactates for the sole purpose of feeding her young.
- Today’s dairy cows produce up to 12 time more milk than they naturally would to feed a calf. This is because of extensive biological manipulation.
- Calves are generally stolen from their mothers within hours of being born. The bellow of the mother is enough to haunt anyones dreams.
- Due to being repeatedly impregnated each year, and milked twice daily, many dairy cows begin to produce less and less milk at the 4 to 5 year mark. This means they are no longer profitable to the industry and are generally murdered for meat by the time they are 5 years old. In natural conditions, cows can live up to 25 years.
Sorry if you’re reading this, mum. I know you don’t see it this way.
Now, here I am today, just over two years vegan and starting to take my next step in life toward a completely raw vegan diet.
“As I improved my diet, I started to learn to love my self, probably for the first time ever.” -Frank Ferrante
I now get up early every morning to milk my beautiful herd of almonds. These almonds create the most incredibly creaming, nutritious, and delicious milk imaginable, and I can’t wait to share it with you!
So, without further ado, my darlings….
- 1-2 cups raw almonds (soak overnight or for 8-12 hours)
- 4 cups of water
- 1 tsp cinnamon (optional)
- Milk bag or fine strainer (or refer to my hemp milk post for my DIY milk bag)
- Take your soaked almonds and rinse under running water.
- Place almonds in the blender and add 4 cups of water and cinnamon if using.
- Blend for about 2 minutes. I have a Nutri Ninja and I use the high speed AutoIQ option twice.
- Pour into a jug through the milk bag and squeeze like your life depends on it!
- Pour milk into a bottle and do what you will with your almond pulp. – Today I decided to dehydrate mine to create almond meal!
I added cinnamon to my milk this time. But I have previously soaked a vanilla bean with my almonds overnight and drinking that creation was a dream. Otherwise, you can add rice malt syrup, agave, turmeric, or any other sweetener or flavour you might like.
Here is my almond pulp being dehydrated to create almond meal…
The best reasons for milking the almonds are:
- No wastage! You can use the milk AND the pulp! And no lives are wasted in the making of this glorious plant based milk!
- No cruelty! You don’t hear these babies bellow. In fact, I think they cheer as they spin through the blender as if they’re on a merry-go-round.
- My dog likes drinking my almond milk and it doesn’t make her gain excessive fat. Woohoo. Happy dog = happy Skye.
- Not only do you get milk, but you can get almond meal, crackers, and more by using the pulp too!
Try almond milk for yourself and let me know what you think! Here is Bella staring at my almond milk whilst hoping for a treat.