We’ve all had soy milk before. But have you had black soy milk yet? Well, I have, and I love it! I first tried it when I was in Taiwan. And you can easily get it there in any 7-Eleven convenience store. They even have black soy milk with ground sesame inside, which was my favourite. I find the taste of black soy milk more nutty and fragrant than regular soy milk and it’s a good way of switching things up when regular cow’s milk gets a bit boring.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), black foods are generally beneficial for the kidney and black soy beans and black sesame in particular, are regarded to not just having kidney-tonifying effects, but they also help darken hair and keep those pesky white hairs at bay. This is because the kidney is what governs your hair in TCM, so what is good for the kidney will be good for the hair as well.
Making your own soy milk does involve some work, but hey, soy has lots of benefits, such as being rich in antioxidants, isoflavones and helping improve arterial function. Commercial soy milk is usually ultra heat treated and will never taste as good as one that’s freshly made. So the extra work is worth it!
I know much has been made of the dangers of soy and GMO soy, in particular. But I believe being healthy means eating in moderation, having sufficient exercise and maintaining a positive attitude.
There is an entire industry predicated on people’s desire to be healthy. But you don’t–and shouldn’t–need to eat fancy chia seeds and spirulina powder, expensive virgin coconut oil or posh salads to be healthy. I’m not saying that these aren’t healthy or that they can’t be part of a healthy diet. I’m just saying that the benefits of all these ‘superfoods’ have been overhyped and it seems to be some sort of fashion trend to eat such foods.
Many will probably disagree and point to mountains of research to back it up. But research on health and nutrition has been going in opposite directions for years and need to be taken with a pinch of salt. Remember how we were told that butter was bad and margarine was good? Yet the discovery of the dangers of trans fats has changed the official recommendation 180 degrees!
And all that bad press about too much salt in our diets? Now look at this. It could actually be too low!
So the moral of the story?
Just eat a wide variety of foods (not junk food, obviously) in moderation and you’ll be fine! Overthinking and overanalysing what one should or should not eat might actually cause you to become orthorexic (obsession with healthy eating) and that in itself is unhealthy. So why not just sit back and relax with a cup of black soy milk? 😛
A thing to note about this recipe is that you should try to blend the beans as much as you can, preferably into a mush, to extract maximum flavour. I only have a small hand-held blender so I couldn’t break the beans down sufficiently. This would affect the intensity of my soy milk, though it was still delicious.
I sweetened my soy milk with the brown rock sugar that I got from Okinawa on a trip there last year (see picture above). You can of course use regular brown sugar or any type of sugar you like.
I usually heat up the soy milk with a spoon of toasted ground black sesame as I like the fragrance of the sesame.
Black Soy Milk
- 300g black soy beans
- 1.5L water (to blend the beans with)
- Sugar to taste
- Piece of cheese cloth
- Container to keep the soy milk
- Wash and soak the beans overnight.
- The next day, drain the beans and blend it with water in batches in a food processor. Blend the beans as fine as you can to extract maximum flavour. The total amount of water used to blend the beans should be about 1.5L.
- Strain the blended bean and water mixture with the cheese cloth into a large pot.
- Bring the strained soy milk to a boil slowly. Keep stirring to prevent the bottom from burning. Once it boils, leave the flame on for another 1-2min and then switch it off.
- Add sugar to your taste.
- Serve and enjoy.