Sunday, November 13, 2011

Simple As That Almond Butter

Ah, I am terrible. I seem to have gotten a bit ahead of myself with this blog.

I had this glorified image of a food blog that would flourish rapidly and I would prance around showering my family and friends with baked goods and delicious recipes. Well, blogs don't quite write themselves and I am very aware of that.

Many things have been happening in my little world lately. I am back working part-time as retail-person and barista at a local bakery where I worked during my senior year three years ago. It's such a great feeling to be back there and I've slipped quickly into the rhythm of things with some help from friendly old faces. It's like I never left!

Along with starting my online education in January I will also be teaching my very own Japanese adult-education class. As excited as I am, I am also very nervous. I've never taught before and I feel extremely under qualified to be teaching a room full of students years older than myself.

I haven't been completely bad about my culinary aspirations, I've been cooking and baking quite frequently as of late but I get so "in the zone"that I completely forget to take photos. I have also been experimenting with different recipes and of course these things need to be refined first before I can share them with you.

I will do my best to churn out these recipes as soon as possible but for the time being, I will leave you with this simple almond butter recipe that I whipped--or should I say pulsed--up this morning.

Almond Butter
This is a very healthy almond butter recipe that contains none of the mysterious additives of the commercial brands and costs you a fraction of those at big health food stores.

If you follow my recipe you will have a very nutty, thick, and creamy spread that pairs excellently with sliced apples or pears, or in a sandwich with your favorite jelly. I am a big fan of natural flavors so the salt and sweetener is barely noticeable but as with any recipe, you are more than welcome to make your own adjustments.

This recipe can be easily adjusted for any other nut butter you desire. For those of you who are allergic to nuts, I suggest trying to substitute sunflower seeds for a delicious sunflower butter!

1 cup raw almonds (or any raw, unseasoned nut of your choice)
1 tsp. honey
Pinch of salt

First, roast the nuts. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Spread out nuts on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast in the oven for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the nuts release their aroma. Let cool for about 20 minutes.

Throw roasted nuts into a food processor along with salt and honey, or any other syrupy sweetener. I used a bit of light corn syrup that we have been trying to get rid of. The amount of sweetener I added does not make the butter very sweet as I prefer the natural nutty flavor but feel free to adjust the amount to your taste.

Pulse on high, stopping every now and again to scrape the nuts off the sides of the processor. This is quite time consuming but I assure you it will eventually become a thick creamy spread consistency as the nuts release their oils.

This butter will separate but will easily be brought back together when stirred.

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