Original unenriched soy milk or soy drink or soya beverage is used in many vegetarian and vegan recipes. It is used as a replacement for dairy milk to make shakes, smoothies, soy yogurt, and a wide variety of dishes. Soy milk is especially popular in China and Japan.
“Soy milk is found in many vegan and vegetarian food products and can be used as a replacement for cow's milk in many recipes.
"Sweet" and "salty" soy milk are both traditional Chinese breakfast foods, served either hot or cold, usually accompanied by breads like mantou (steamed rolls), youtiao (deep-fried dough), and shaobing (sesame flatbread). The soy beverage is typically sweetened by adding cane sugar or, sometimes, simple syrup. "Salty" soy milk is made with a combination of chopped pickled mustard greens, dried shrimp and, for curdling, vinegar, garnished with youtiao croutons, chopped scallion (spring onions), cilantro (coriander), meat floss (肉鬆; ròusōng), or shallot as well as sesame oil, soy sauce, chili oil or salt to taste. Soy milk is used in many kinds of Japanese cuisine, such as in making yuba as well as sometimes a base soup for nabemono. In Korean cuisine, soy milk is used as a soup for making kongguksu, cold noodle soup eaten mostly in summer.
Soy milk is also used in making soy yogurt, soy cream, soy kefir and soy based cheese analogues.”
“Soy milk flavor quality differs according to the cultivar of soybean. Soy milk aroma, smoothness and thickness in the mouth, color and creamy appearance are considered desirable qualities, with favored sensory attributes associating with protein content, soluble solids, and oil content.
In a study of taste attributes, soy milk flavored with vanilla or sweet aromatic flavors and higher viscosity was preferred by most subjects, while dislike factors were bean or broth flavors. In another study, 54% of participants preferred the taste of cow's milk, while 27% preferred soy milk, with sweetness and cream qualities identified as important flavor preferences.”
“In a 100 ml (gram, g) serving, one commercial, nutrient-fortified brand of soy milk provides 80 calories from 4 g of carbohydrates, including 1 g of sugar, 4 g of fat and 7 g of protein. This processed soy milk contains appreciable levels of vitamin A, B vitamins and vitamin D in a range of 10 to 45% of the Daily Value, with calcium and magnesium also in significant content.”
Other plant-based drinks:
A number of other plant-based drinks are used as substitutes for dairy milk; for example, almond milk, rice milk, and oat milk.
From Wikipedia: “Soy milk (also spelled soymilk) is a plant based drink produced by soaking dried soybeans and grinding them in water.
A traditional staple of East Asian cuisine, soy milk is a stable emulsion of oil, water and protein. Soy milk can be produced at home using a soy milk machine. It is often used as a substitute for dairy milk.”
In some countries, products may not be labeled as soy milk. The term “milk” is legally protected and as a result, soy drink is often used instead.
“Using soybeans to make milk instead of raising cows may be ecologically advantageous. Cows require much more energy in order to produce milk, since the farmer must feed the animal, which can consume up to 24 kilograms (53 lb) of food in dry matter basis and 90 to 180 litres (24 to 48 US gal) of water a day, producing an average of 40 kilograms (88 lb) of milk a day. Legumes, including the soybean plant, also replenish the nitrogen content of the soil in which they are grown.
The cultivation of soybeans in South America has been cited as a cause of deforestation and a range of other large-scale environmental harm. The majority of soybean cultivation worldwide, especially in South America where cattle farming is widespread, is intended for livestock fodder rather than soy milk production.”