|A glass of rice milk|
Rice milk is so easily available now in most grocery stores and has been hailed as a vegan replacement to milk. It is a godsend for many dairy allergy sufferers too, provided rice is acceptable to you. Here's a little secret about rice milk. It has been a part of the poor man's diet, in Asia for centuries as a frugal source of nutrition and not as a vegan alternative to dairy milk! Even to this day, the poor of India drink the water that rice has been boiled in as they consider it strengthening. It helps to stretch out their consumption of rice as well. It is also the poor mans' electrolyte! Yup, you read that right! Especially for babies. Babies are too small to be given commercial electrolytes and I fed my babies when they were ill, with home made rice milk as it is safer option. It's just some rice boiled in water till very soft with a little salt added to it. Sipping home made rice milk, when you are suffering from stomach flu, helps replace important nutrients in the body and prevents dehydration. I do this for my family when anyone of them is ill, throwing up and purging. Some commercial brands of rice milk add fats to give more body and mouth-feel to their rice milk as well as vitamins. Well and good, but I like my rice milk the old fashioned way - how my grandmother taught me to make it.
My Grandmother's recipe for Rice Milk
1/2 cup long grain rice, brown or white
3 to 4 cups filtered water
1/4 teaspoon salt
Method: Put rice in a dry pan. Lightly toast it over a low flame for a couple of minutes till its lightly brown. Pour in the water and cook till the rice and water has mushed up completely. Add salt. You may have to add more water if the water level runs low before rice is porridgy. Cool and sieve through a mesh sieve. Can be processed in a food processor as well. You now have your rice milk! Store in the fridge. Does not have a long shelf life as its preservative free so it has to be consumed fairly quickly.