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by / Sunday, May 11, 2014

Maple Almond Butter

Maple Almond Butter
Last year for Mother's Day, I shared some Lavender Shortbread Cookies that were inspired by my mom's dreams of running a lavender farm. This year, I decided to go in a slightly different direction and share something I love for Mother's Day. I mean, I'm a mom - so that's okay, right?

It's something that (in my house) I, and I alone, love: almond butter. That's a good thing and a bad thing all wrapped into one little glass jar. It's good because that means I don't have to go thorugh the experience of craving some, and then going to grab the jar only to realize that it's no longer there. Because somebody else ate it all and didn't tell me so I could replace it.  It's bad for the exact same reason. It's there waiting for me to eat it. All. Every single time I walk by and spy it on the shelf or in the fridge. Oh, let me grab a spoon...

Really. I do that. It's entirely addictive. But in all fairness, I do the same thing with cookie butter. And chocolate hazelnut spread. Apparently I enjoy eating expensive spreadable things from a jar.

Of course, squeezable packets aren't safe, either - one in particular. You nut butter fans probably know the packets of which I speak. Small, white, a big ol' nut on the front. My hands-down favorite is the Maple Almond Butter. Good gawd, that stuff is ridiculous. Therefore, I need to make myself a big jar of it.

I make almond butter every once in a while. It was actually the sixth thing that I ever shared here on the blog more than 5 years ago. But again, not that often, lest I eat it all. So, why it never dawned on me to check the ingredient list on the package is beyond me. So, I did. Easy. Almonds, oil, maple sugar, salt. In other words, regular almond butter with the addition of maple sugar. DONE!

And so worth it. Happy Mother's Day to me.

Maple Almond Butter
Homemade Almond Butter accented with a hint of maple.
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Maple Almond Butter
by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez
Prep Time: 5-10 minutes
Cook Time: 12-14 minutes
Keywords: roast condiment vegan dairy-free gluten-free soy-free almonds

Ingredients (scant 1-1/2 cups)
  • 12 ounces raw almonds
  • 1/4 cup maple sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350° F. Spread almonds out on a baking sheet. Slide into oven and roast until they get lightly toasty and smell nutty and fabulous, 12-14 minutes. Remove from oven and let sit until cool.

Put almonds into the bowl of a food processor with the remaining ingredients and process until smooth, stopping to scrape the processor bowl if the "meal" starts to form a solid layer on the bottom. Don't fret if it doesn't turn to a paste right away. Even at the 3 minute mark, it still looks like a moist meal - keep going. At about 5 minutes, you'll see it start to ball together and turn up and over the blade. So, hang tight, processing time should be about 5 minutes.
Maple Almond Butter
Transfer to a glass jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator.

Enjoy! Try it for breakfast spread on toast with some fresh fruit on top. Of course, it's also a little bit too good eaten directly from a spoon.

notes:
If you're in a bind and want maple sugar right away, but don't have any and can't wait for an order to be shipped to you, you can substitute 1/4 cup of granulated sugar plus 1 tablespoon of pure maple syrup. Proceed as directed.

I like to make my nut butters without any added oil. However, if you prefer a slightly looser and creamier spread, simply drizzle in a little bit of light, neutral oil (like grapeseed) into the processor while it's running, until it reaches the consistency you want. It won't take much, so add a very little at a time.
Maple Almond Butter



Heather is a Michiana-based food, drink, and travel writer with a fondness for garlic, freshly baked bread, stinky cheese, dark beer, and Mexican food—who believes that immersing herself in different cultures one bite at a time is the best path to enlightenment.

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