So, here’s something I feel like I should share: when writing blog posts, it’s easy for me to tell flat out lies. It’s not intentional, it’s usually not about something that even matters, and it has more to do with tone and voice than with content.
I’m not saying I find it easy to lie about important food blog things, like measurements or flavors, but instead about things like the character I’m creating for myself, or the attitude I’m adopting towards a certain recipe. For example, typing “2 Tablespoons lemon juice” when I can’t really remember how much lemon juice I used is REALLY difficult for me and will leave me feeling so guilty that I’ll test the recipe again, just to make sure I’m not leading my readers astray. Those aren’t the type of lies I mean, though.
The type of dishonesty I’m talking about is similar to the “professor’s office phenomenon” a friend and I have discussed at length. It’s like this: You’re waiting outside a professor’s office, ready to go in and discuss the topic of your seminar paper, your midterm presentation, whatever. You have some ideas jotted down in your notebook, and you’re feeling really sweaty and itchy because this professor is austere and respected and even a little bit famous in certain scholarly circles.
The lying happens as soon as the professor starts asking you questions. Instead of saying actual things that you think, you start spouting off random stuff–for example, you’ll start saying that “you’ve always studied a certain literary figure and you’ve really been noticing a certain theme all semester,” and in your head you’re like, “oh god oh god this isn’t true i don’t think this why don’t you just talk about the things you underlined stop talking stop close your mouth.” But it keeps happening, and then your professor gets a quizzical look, as if she’s getting worried about you, and you start doing little maniacal chuckles and acting like you’ve, “WELP! DEFINITELY GOT A BETTER IDEA OF WHERE YOUR PAPER IS GOING. ::drops notebook, shuffles papers, escapes office::
Man alive. At least I don’t have to deal with THAT anxiety anymore. Until I go on a job interview probably.
In my blogging, this type of blatant dishonesty can manifest itself as a made-up mood or opinion. It’s too easy to slip into a tone or stance that I don’t actually identify with, and have absolutely no idea why. For example, I could portray myself as totally happy and psyched on a certain day when I really just want to have a pity party, or I could start professing the merits of a dietary cleanse while eating sriracha and olive oil popcorn for six (who, me?). Or I could act really annoyed with the onslaught of wheat-free, dairy-free cooking when I actually kind of enjoy it. @_@
What I’m saying is, it can be really difficult to make your blog about yourself. After all–there are trends out there, people have opinions, things go viral, people mistake your tone, you’re not supposed to blog about topics outside your category. In short, there are a ton of forces quelching your real, actual voice–I guess I should say my real, actual voice–when readers really just want to know what’s unique about a blogger, what’s unique about me!
Anyway, that was going to happen in this post. I was GOING to profess the merits of almond milk and urge you to give up dairy as part of the diet you might be on…all because I made this quite beautiful and simple almond milk and wanted to share it. The truth? I’m still trying to like almond milk. I mean–I LIKE it, but not as a dairy milk replacement. Yet. It’s no cottage cheese.
Still, who knew you could make almond milk at home? And this easily? And that it could be this lovely and silky?
Next thing? Trying to increase my love of almond milk by turning it into ice cream and/or chocolate almond milk.
What about you other bloggers out there? Do you ever find yourself writing something even though it’s not what you really think or believe? Is there ever a way to write straight from yourself when there are so many different voices bouncing around the Internet?
Easiest Almond Milk (Vegan, Gluten-free)
Makes about 4 cups
1 cup almonds
3-4 cups filtered water
2 Tablespoons agave nectar (or honey or sugar)*
⅛ teaspoon salt
1. Overnight, soak almonds in water. (Crucial step. Note in the second photo how different the soaked almonds look than the raw almonds in the first photo.)
2. Drain water and blitz almonds, agave, salt, and 1 cup of water in a food processor until very finely ground. Add more water until you have a texture thinner than ranch dressing and thicker than heavy cream.
3. In a large bowl, strain milk through a colander and several layers of cheesecloth. Squeeze cheesecloth to get out every last drop of the milk. Add remaining water to achieve a desired consistency. A little more than three cups was plenty for me.
Store in the refrigerator and always shake/stir before using. I think it should keep for up to 1 week, but is best very fresh. I’ll try freezing it and get back to you.
*Use more or less sweetener according to your tastes. As I’m still getting used to almonds as a drink, I added what I thought was quite a lot of agave.