Recently, I started thinking of making my own soy milk as the ones available for sale here contain only 6-11% soy. They were marketed as soy drinks/water rather than soy milk and I felt that they just lacked the soy flavour that comes from soy milk that we get back in Malaysia.
My initial hunt on the Internet churned out recipes that used a soy machine but I wasn’t keen on spending €100 minimum on something which I wasn’t consuming on a regular basis. Then I discovered that I had the recipe for homemade soy milk all along in one of my Asian cookbooks. So it was off to get a blender and some soy beans. I found a good deal on a no-name housebrand style blender for €20 and some organic hulled soy beans at the organic shop where I go to regularly to get my supply of grains, legumes and sugar.
Operation Soy Milk-Pudding finally started!
I soaked the beans yesterday afternoon in cold water and changed the water again before I went to bed. This morning, when I woke up, the water was less cloudy and the beans were quite soft. With Noah watching me in the high chair – we had just finished breakfast – I set to work on grinding up beans with clean drinking water until they resemble a paste or thick batter of some sort. I ground the beans up twice to ensure that I broken the beans down to a fine paste which would mean that I would be able to get more “milk” out of them.
Now here’s the tough part. I squeezed out every single drop of soy milk from the okara (the soy bean pulp) by hand with the aid of an unused cotton cloth nappy. The okara is placed aside; I plan to oven dry it and keep it as a flour to be used in baked goods as okara is high in calcium, iron and other nutrients. The resulting milk is then placed over the stove top to boil and cook – important as crude soy milk don’t go down very well.
(If you have a soy milk maker, you won’t have to do all this as some machines can churn out milk with just dry soy beans. But we all know why I don’t have a soy milk maker!)
The result is a very nice and creamy soy milk that isn’t too thick. It doesn’t have much of a taste to it – maybe because I didn’t add a lot of pandan essence (I wanted to retain the natural soy flavour) but sweetening it with agave syrup or honey made it much more palatable!
Homemade soy milk
250 gms yellow soy beans
1.5 liters water
1-2 drops of pandan/vanilla essence / some fresh pandan leaves
- Soak the beans in cold water overnight or for 8 hours minimum. I did it for around 16 hours just to be on the safe side. When ready, wash and remove any debris or skin. Place aside.
- Blend the beans together with some water in a food processor or blender until the beans are finely ground and form a paste or thick batter. Add more water into the blender if necessary. Repeat until all the beans are ground – this takes about three tries. When they are done, blend the paste again to ensure a good fine grind.
- Using a cheesecloth or muslin (I used traditional white cotton nappies which are made from cotton muslin), squeeze out the liquid from the soy paste. Patience is a virtue at this stage. Place aside the okara (ground soy bean pulp) as it can be used as a flour or in omelettes, etc.
- When ready, heat the soy milk over a medium fire until it comes to a boil. Add in the pandan/vanilla essence or fresh leaves and turn the fire down to allow the milk to simmer. Continue to cook the milk on low heat for at least 15 minutes.
- Once ready, place the milk aside to cool and store in the fridge. You can serve this with some sugar, syrup or honey to add sweetness to it.
NOTE: Because this is homemade and do not contain any preservatives, please consume within 48 hours.
This is a recipe for a soy pudding or tau foo fah with a twist. Instead of making tau foo fah with gypsum powder or GDL (Glucono delta-lactone) – I can’t seem to find them here in Dole (I might have better luck in Lyon) – I made mine with agar agar, the vegetarian sister of gelatin. I didn’t really follow any recipe but instead just the instructions at the back of the packet.
The resulting pudding is a little firmer than what I would like it to be and I did forget to remove the “skin” off the surface as it was cooling down. Still, it makes for a nice dessert, especially when paired with the ginger sugar syrup that I made. For the syrup, I used a mixture of sugars that I have at home. Do note that coconut sugar isn’t the same as palm sugar. Coconut sugar is made from the coconut flower bud whereas palm sugar is made from the sap of the palm. Coconut sugar has a very lovely fragrant and dark honey colour to it and I find it to rival the flavour of palm sugar.
Noah had a few spoonfuls of this and was screaming for more when the bowl was empty! I reckon it’s the fragrant, smooth yet textured feel of the soy pudding that he likes.
600 ml soy milk (see recipe above)
1/2 tbsp agar agar
(B) Ginger syrup
1″ ginger, thinly sliced
25 gms white sugar
30 gms brown sugar
50 gms coconut sugar
10 gms palm sugar
Approx 30 ml water
- In a pot, heat up 300 ml soy milk until it begins to simmer. Add in the agar agar and stir well. Add the remainder of the soy milk and bring the mixture to a boil for 1-2 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and pour into a mould, ramekins or pan of your choice using a sieve. Place aside for a few minutes to cool before removing the “skin” (a skin would form over the surface – you could leave it as it’s edible but for appearance sake, it looks better removed).
- Allow the mixture to set – about 2-4 hours – before placing it in the fridge.
- Place all the ingredients for the syrup in a small pot and slowly heat over a medium-low fire until the sugar has dissolved. Use a whisk to stir and incorporate the sugar with the water.
- Once the mixture bubbles, turn down to a low heat and allow it to simmer for a further 5 minutes. Be careful not to let it come to a boil.
- When ready, remove and store in a clean, glass jar. Allow the syrup to cool before storing it in the fridge.
- Serve your soy pudding with drizzles of the syrup – it goes down well hot or cold.