For the majority of us who don’t live near a camel dairy farm or a store that stocks our favorite drink, keeping a regular supply might be a problem. Some turn to camel milk powder as a substitute, but how does it compare to the fresh variety? Any time a liquid product changes state, things are lost and, depending on the method, things may be added. For the most part, the powdered and fresh varieties are the same, but there are some definite advantages and disadvantages to each.
Advantages Of Powdered Camel Milk
Easy storage is the reason many buyers choose to buy camel milk powder. Since most buyers choose camel milk for its health benefits, producers choose not to add any preservatives and the milk is often not pasteurized. Camel milk will stay fresh a few days longer than cow milk, but even when kept cool, it doesn’t last very long. If you have to have camel milk shipped to you, you probably need to buy a large supply each time. Shipped camel milk usually arrives frozen, and keeping all that milk frozen will take a huge amount of freezer space. Camel milk powder can be stored in a cabinet for as long as a year, and it’s easy to prepare anytime you want it.
Camel milk powder is also considerably cheaper. Since it is easier to store and ship, distributors are able to charge less for it. Camel milk is already very expensive because camels produce far less milk than a cow, and the dairies in most countries don’t have the specialized technologies for milking and breeding camels. Depending on the brand, choosing camel milk powder could save you 25%.
Some recipes call for powdered milk to be used, and camel milk powder can be used just as well as cow milk powder. Khoya, Burfi, and even some cakes are made with milk powder. Finally, camel milk tends to dissolve better in water than cow milk, so it’s ready faster and taste better.
While camel milk powder retains the essential taste of fresh milk, no drink that’s dried and rehydrated could compare with the original. Dairy farms may use different methods for dehydrating milk, and this can affect the taste. There are two common types of drying: freeze drying and spray drying. Freeze drying involves rapidly freezing the milk and then using a vacuum to remove the ice. Spray drying involves spraying the milk onto a heated surface to dissolve the water, leaving only a powder. The main differences are cost and quality. Freeze drying preserves the flavor and doesn’t affect the contents. Spray drying is a much cheaper process, but because it heats the milk it can cause the same disadvantages that pasteurized milk has. Since some camel milk dairies use the spray method, be sure to find one that uses low-temperature drying to best preserve the taste and nutrition.
At least one doctor who treats autistic patients has said that camel milk powder is not as good as fresh camel milk. She didn’t specify which type of drying process was used but advised her readers to avoid powdered milk altogether. Since there has been little scientific research on the effects of any type of camel milk on autism or other health issues, it’s not possible to say what the powdered version may loose during the drying process. It may be best for the consumer to try both fresh and powdered camel milk and see how they compare.