Next, strain through a clean t-shirt (a nut milk bag will allow too much sediment through) into your storage receptacle of choice. You can gently nudge the oat mixture through the cloth with the back of a spoon, but don’t push too hard or squeeze the leftover pulp, which contains the gluey starch compounds (although you can add the pulp to oatmeal or cookies, if you wish).

While I never found this basic recipe slimy, it wasn’t as creamy as I hoped. So, in my quarantine-allotted free time, I dove into a whirlwind of blender-supported recipe research and Osterized my way through an array of creamy additions. The Alt Milk Queens of my apartment obligingly closed their eyes and tasted the results.

First, I added 1 teaspoon canola oil (any neutral oil would work) to the blender with the oats and water. Everyone found this less grainy than the original recipe, but not yet velvety.

Next, instead of the oil, I tried adding ¼ cup nuts (soaked overnight), blending them with 2 cups water for 30 seconds, then adding the remaining 2 cups water along with 1 cup dry oats and a pinch of salt. I blended the full mixture for 20 more seconds and strained.

Here was the creaminess we’d been missing! I tested three separate nut combinations: ¼ cup macadamias, ¼ cup cashews, and a 50:50 combo. My patient oat-milk-adoring roommates dutifully sipped from their testing glasses and tried each combination. In a blind test, the winner in both taste and texture was half cashews/half macadamia nuts—silky and rich, yet not nutty tasting. I suspect another nut or combination (Brazil, hazelnut, pecan, you name it!) would also work deliciously.

Store your oat milk in the fridge for up to five days, and give it a vigorous shake before drinking or using it to cook or bake, as some separation is inevitable (but sliminess doesn’t have to be). With a whirl of our blender, these Alt Milk Queens dub you Oat Milk Royalty. We recommend you sip from a chalice while wearing a crown.

Kate Raphael is a writer based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. You can read more of her essays on food, running, and living through a pandemic here. 

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