Plastic-Free July Eco-Challenge, Day 19: Almond Cow

Whidbey Island is a fantastic and beautiful place to live. But one thing I wish I could change is the recycling accessibility. We don’t recycle near the amount of items that Seattle or other cities do. It’s the downside to small community living.

Because Whidbey doesn’t recycle some of the common items other cities do, I have had to be creative with some of my waste. Almond and coconut milk containers, the ones in the 64 oz cartons, can’t be recycled. So, I made dumbbells by filling them with sand and wrapping them in duct tape so I could easily grip them.

But you can only make so many dumbbells before you have too many. Which is why I’ll be hosting a Reuse, Recycle, Reduce Your Waist workshop on my last day on the island, August 4th at the Tilth Farmers Market. But it’s also why I looked for alternatives to getting my almond or coconut milk without wasting the containers.

Waste-less Milk

Last month, I saw an advertisement for “The Almond Cow”. It’s a machine which will turn almonds, nuts, and even oats into milk. That’s right, waste-less almond milk. I got it for Chris’ birthday (hey, he got a dishwasher for my birthday, I can get something we both enjoy for his birthday). That was 9 days ago. We just got it today.

It was a pretty funny scenario. I was fixing dinner, and it was almost ready. Then I got the alert that the Almond Cow had been delivered. Chris ran downstairs and I think even ran to the mailbox to go get it. He had just told me how hungry he was getting, but when the Almond Cow arrived, he basically said “screw dinner, let’s make some MILK!”

It’s pretty easy and very fast. Knowing our Almond Cow was supposed to be delivered today, I soaked some almonds ahead of time. As soon as we opened it, we put the almonds in the filter, added the water, and in a minute, we had almond milk. It was like magic.

Infinite Possibilities

It’s not just milk we can make, but plenty of other snacks. The pulp can be used to make crackers, crumbles, and added to shakes, oatmeal (or pulp-meal), and granola.

We can make yogurt from this milk, which I’m really excited to try. There are dozens of other recipes to try with different nuts, and other ingredients. I can make margaritas (if I didn’t get rid of all my tequila), cakes (if I ate sugar), and specialty drinks (golden milk, lemonade, and lattes).

I’m going to make my first waste-less smoothie for breakfast, and then I’m going to explore all the options for cooking and brewing with my new Almond Cow. It feels good to do something which is really good for me, and even better for the environment. The true spirit of ZooFit.

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