Friday, November 13, 2015

Almond Butter DIY

I LOVE almond butter, and I go through it pretty quickly. I hated paying the outrageous price at the supermarket to feed my almond butter habit, but I did it anyway. I have always read about making almond butter from scratch but up until earlier this year, I had put it off. It was intimidating to me for some reason.  I thought it was going to be difficult to make.  

That is, until my friend Babs asked me if I had made my own almond butter yet.  When I answered "No, not yet", she told me in 3 easy steps how simple it was to do. I thought to myself "Geesh, and I haven't tried this yet...why?"

I had to make sure I had all the ingredients on hand. Raw almonds.  Sea salt. Check.
Then my food processor had to have the correct blade installed. Check.

That's it. I was ready!

I measured out 2 1/2 cups of raw almonds, guessing the final product would fit into a recycled 12 oz jar.  It did, with no room to spare.  My friend Babs said she measured out 3 cups of almonds and the almond butter fit into her 16 oz jar.

Next I began processing the almonds. BE WARNED, the first several seconds are hard on the ears when the almonds hit the plastic bowl as they swirl around.  But take heart, the noise settles very quickly and soon it begins to purr.  

Once it starts to look like crumbs, stop the machine and scrape down the sides. I added about a 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt the second time I made this, and I liked it better. It really brought out a good flavor. But this is optional.

Within just a few minutes the crumbs start forming a ball. Stop the machine again and break the ball apart. This step is probably not necessary, but it allows the motor to cool just a tad.

Within just a few more minutes, the ball becomes the spread! Continue processing this until you get a nice smooth consistency, scraping down the sides occasionally. Remove the blade and scrape out the butter into a clean, recycled jar or container of your choice. This entire process took maybe 15 minutes. 

Enjoy right away on a piece of bread, or however you enjoy any type of nut butter. You can also use it in the any smoothie recipe. I've provided one of my favorite smoothie recipes below. Store the remaining almond butter in the refrigerator.

                                   Mocha Smoothie

Makes 1 serving

1 cup of original unsweetened almond milk
1/4 - 1/2 cup cold brewed coffee
1 tablespoon almond butter
1 tablespoon ground flax seed
1-2 scoops of vanilla protein powder *
2 teaspoons of raw cacao powder,or unsweetened Dutch cocoa
1 tablespoon of Dandy Blend, OR 1 teaspoon of espresso powder, OR 1/4 teaspoon coffee extract. Optional, but recommended if you really like coffee flavor
3-4 ice cubes**

*I use Plant Fusion Vanilla
** I freeze left-over coffee into cubes, then use these in my smoothies

My son dehydrates kale for me from his organic garden, so I will often add a tablespoon of dried kale to my smoothies. You can use fresh, or any other kind of green complex if desired. This is totally optional, but a good way to get in some greens.

Add all ingredients to a high-speed blender and process just until smooth. Pour into a glass and enjoy!

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