Category Archives: dips and spreads
Almond butter came into my life in 2004 when I was doing my first candida cleanse. And I kid you not, at the time it was pure indulgence. Not much was allowed on the cleanse, but small doses of almond butter was okay, so I pretty much fell in love. After the cleanse and through the years I ate almond butter regularly. I’m deathly allergic to peanuts, so how fun to make my own version of PB&J with almond butter. As much as I love almond butter, about a year ago I discovered that it irritates my digestion to no end. So although I don’t eat almonds or almond butter much anymore, it’s beloved by my husband and children. So I make it for them. Making at home is also motivated by the insanely high price of store bought organic almond butters (common to see $15 for a jar…I’ve seen it as high as $24!!). If you love roasted almond butter and want to save a little money, then this recipe is for you. I also make a raw version with soaked and dehydrated almonds and included directions for this at the end of the post.
- 3 cups raw organic almonds
- Pinch of salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Arrange the almonds on a baking sheet in a single layer
- Roast for 10 minutes
- Remove from oven and allow the almonds to cool completely
- When the almonds are cool, add to a food processor
- Turn it on and let it whirl. After about a minute the almonds will form a stiff, dry ball. This is okay. Take off the lid and break the ball apart with a fork. Turn the machine back on and keep it blending. If it stops up again, do the same with the fork
- After about 3 minutes the oils in the almonds will release and the mixture will become thin. Continue blending until the almonds are creamy and smooth. It takes about 9 minutes in my food processor. Add in your pinch of salt toward the end of the process. Please note, I do NOT have a fancy, high tech food processor. It is the most basic model
- Store in glass container in the fridge
- 3 cups raw organic almonds
- Walnut oil (or olive oil)
- Pinch of salt
- In a large bowl, add the almonds and fill with filtered water (with about two inches over top of almonds). Soak for 12 - 24 hours. I soak mine for 24 and change the water once
- Drain and rinse the almonds
- Lay them out on a towel and pat off the excess water
- Add almonds to a food dehydrator and dehydrate on 105 degrees for about 30 hours
- The almonds will be properly dehydrated when they are crisp and crunch to the taste and you an visually see the meat of the almond is dry. You can tell when there is moisture left, you can see it and feel it
- Place the dehydrated almonds in a food processor and blend. You need to stay close to the food processor and give it many breaks, as the almonds get very hot and you don't want the temp to rise over 118 degrees. So if you are keeping this raw, blend and check the temperature throughout the process
- After the almonds look well blended, you can add in a little oil to help the moisture factor. It's up to you how much to add, so start with a teaspoon and go from there. At this point you can also add in the pinch of salt
- Raw almond butter made with this method smells and tastes different than roasted almond butter, but still delicious (and much easier to digest!)
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Homemade Sunflower Seed Butter
-Pinch of salt (optional)
3. After about 6 minutes the seeds will form a ball then become thinner as the oils in the seeds are released.
4. After about 8 minutes of processing you can add in a pinch of salt, but this is totally optional. It should be properly blended by this time. Store in class container in the refrigerator.
Yields 1 1/4 cups of sunbutter
Our neighbor’s lemon tree is showing some action!
They let me go over there whenever I have the need and pick to
my heart’s content.
Our other neighbor has a nice fig tree with a sizable
bunch hanging on our side of the fence!
So excited for these!
We still have watermelons to harvest!
We had quite the bounty this year.
Our tomato plant is out of control, but still providing
us with sweet, gorgeous cherry tomatoes.
During my weekly grocery shopping I passed some lox and started to dream about cream cheese and bagels. I don’t spend too much time in this dream world though (because there is always a tasty alternative to be had) and popped those lox into my basket with a grin along with some gluten free English muffins. Before bed I put 1/2 cup of cashews in some water to soak until morning and breakfast was nothing short of a dream come true. This recipe is based off THIS vegan/dairy free “sour cream.”
-3/4 teaspoon garlic granules (or 1 clove)
-3/4 cup fresh cilantro (or more to taste)
-Filtered water (to bring the hummus to a preferred consistency)
2. With the food processor running, drizzle in oil.
3. Check for texture. Too thick? Add in 1 tablespoon of water at a time until you reach your desired texture.
*Soak beans in filtered water for at least 8 hours, I soak mine for 24 hours and change the water 2x. Boil in filtered water until tender and store in fresh water until ready to use. I soak & boil around 6 cups of beans at a time and freeze the leftovers for another day (they do great in the freezer!).
*A word about the beans: I go back and forth between garbanzo beans and chana dal beans. Chana dal yields a nice smooth hummus but with a much milder flavor so you really need to increase your ingredients. Garbanzos are rich and flavorful with a thicker consistency. I love them both but lately I’ve been using garbanzo beans for that full hummus flavor.
When I came across a recipe for cashew sour cream in one of my favorite cookbooks from Cafe Gratitude I thought, “Yeah, we’ll see.” There’s like 3 ingredients…how is this going to turn out. I haven’t had real sour cream in years and I so miss this addition to our taqueria night. I am opposed to soy sour cream and so what’s a dairy-free girl to do? Can I tell you I nearly fell off my chair when I bit into my burrito. DELICIOUS. I couldn’t believe it. My kids loved it too, and of course my husband was very impressed. Please try this and be dazzled by delicious simplicity.
I have to say…I’m very pleased with vegan pesto. I don’t miss the the cheese at all. And I use walnuts instead of pine nuts. I guess there is a global pine nut shortage which prompted my local coop to put the pine nuts they did have in these ittty-bitty tiny plastic bags. I laughed so hard and thought, I can’t make pesto with 5 pine nuts!! Thus, the walnuts made their debut and the outcome…sooo tasty!
-2 ounces of fresh basil (sort of hard to measure in cups, probably 4 cups)
-1 cup raw organic walnuts (you could also toast the walnuts, but do not if making raw)
-3 to 4 tablespoons fresh lemon (to taste)
-1/2 cup olive oil (or preferred oil)
-1/2 teaspoon garlic granules (or one clove of fresh garlic – or to taste)
-1/2 teaspoon salt
1. Place toasted walnuts in food processor and pulse a few times.
2. Add basil, garlic granules, salt and pulse.
3. Turn on food processor, add in lemon juice and drizzle in oil. Scrape down sides now and then.
4. Test for seasoning.
|Daddy and Ethan gathering basil from the garden.|
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