Soybean milk (豆水）is a healthy, nutritious,and delicious drink for everyone. It’s also one of my family’s favourite drinks. For convenience, we usually consume those pre-packed ones even though they lack the wholesome freshness in taste. Beggar can’t be choosy, right?
But recently I chanced upon a very informative post written by Dr Leslie Tay of ieatishootipost on how to make tau huay/ tofu fah. Tau huay (soybean curd/豆花) is an end product from the coagulation of soybean milk. I was truly inspired and impressed by the amont of efforts and time he spent experimenting before he finally made his perfect tau huay. However, going all the way to attempt at making tau huay looks a bit too ambitous for me for the time being. So, I decided to just stop at making soybean milk using Dr Leslie’s easy-to-follow steps. The slide show presentation in his post also helped me to understand better the process. Besides that, I had also added some tips I learnt from Delicious Asian Food who had also made the awesome looking black soybean milk.
There are several key points to take note before making soybean milk:
a) use a coffee sock/filter to make the squeezing process easier (and less messy if you have space limitation in your kitchen).
b) filter 2 times before cooking and 1 time after cooking to give the soybean milk the extra smoothness.
c) stir the soybean milk constantly during the cooking process so as to avoid burning the milk.
d) bring the soybean milk to boil very slowly.
e) loosen and remove the soya bean skins before cooking. This is to remove the waxy taste.
For a beginner like me, I must admit that it is indeed a very challenging task. Due to lack of experience, I made several silly mistakes in my first attempt. Nevertheless, I stilll managed to produce a smooth and fragrant soybean milk. In fact, it’s the best soybean milk I had tasted so far!
I am someone who is never be discouraged by failures. Practice makes perfect. I always believe that winner is the one who makes the most mistakes. If you read my post carefully before cooking, it will definitely be a POSSIBLE mission for you! I bet if you have tasted your own homemade soybean milk, you will never drink others anymore.
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RECIPE FOR HOMEMADE SOYBEAN MILK
Make: 10 cups
500g soybeans (note 1)
2500ml filter water
5-6 pandan leaves/ screwpine leaves (wash and tie in a knob)
Rock sugar (to taste)
- Wash and rinse the beans several times until the water is clean.
- Put the beans in a large pot, cover with water and soak the beans overnight (at least 10 hours). (note 2)
- Loosen skins by rubbing with your hands. This is to remove the waxy taste (note 3).
- Remove/ discard all the skins from the pot with a sieve (note 3).
- Rinse a few times until the water is clean.
- Drain the beans with colander.
- Put the beans in a blender and add water to cover the beans. Blend until a smooth pulp (slurry) is obtained (note 4).
- Add any remaining water to the slurry.
- Filter slurry with a coffee sock/cloth filter. Let the milk drain into the cooking pot. Then squeeze till dry (note 5 & 6).
- As an extra filter, place a sieve over the cooking pot before squeezing the coffee sock/cloth filter in step 9.
- Before cooking, filter the milk once more to ensure a smooth texture for the end product.
- Pour the filter soybean milk into a large pot and add pandan/screwpine leaves.
- Stir the soybean milk constantly and bring it to a boil very slowly so as to avoid burning the milk.
- In the meantime, prepare sugar syrup using the rock sugar.
- Once the soybean milk starts boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for another 10 mins. Discard the foam and pandan/screwpine leaves (note 7).
- Filter the cooked soybean milk once more to ensure extra smoothness.
- Add the rock sugar syrup to taste. Served hot or cold.
- The quality of beans is the most important factor in making tasty soybean milk. In this case, it is recommended to use organic soybeans.
- The beans will expand and absorb a lot of the soaking water. Thus, make sure you use enough water for soaking. As a rule of thumb: approx. 2 times the amount of the beans.
- Steps (3) and (4) are optionals but I suggest that you do it in your first attempt and see if you can taste the difference.
- If your blender is not moving smoothly, add extra water. I have to blend the beans in a few batches because my blender is small.
- It is easier and faster to squeeze the slurry in 2-3 batches.
- I found that using a coffee sock/ coffee filter helps to speed up the squeezing process. It also reduces the mess in your kitchen basin. I bought mine from a shop selling kitchenware in the wet market.
- It is important to allow the milk to simmer for 10 minutes after you bring it to a boil if you want to bring out the full flavour and fragrance of the soymilk.
- This soybean milk is best consumed within 2 days as no preservative is used. Keep the milk in the refrigerator when not consumed.