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Friday, January 21, 2011

Classic snack AND Giveaway!!!

 So as Winston watches the snow fall,I figured it was a perfect time to tell you about my most useful Christmas present.

I got a brand new,shiny Cuisinart food processor.It's a pretty nice food processor and was an even more generous present from my in-laws this past Christmas. A few years ago I got a pistachio-green KitchenAid mixer and see there was one more piece of kitchen equipment that I wanted.Not so much needed,but I was growing out of the much smaller food processor I got as a birthday present a few years ago.It makes great pesto and it takes a few rounds to make a spicy batch of salsa,but it is perfect size for just that,smaller batch recipes.I though want to move on to some bigger quantity recipes.
 A few months back I tried to make a recipe that will remain nameless and it called for a whole lot of flour.A lot of flour and my smaller-batch food processor gave it her all.She put up the toughest effort,then I tried to call in the pastry blender and after all was said and done,it was a big ol mess and well we'll see if I make that recipe again.Mmmmhhh!
   So what to make now that I've got this nifty piece of machinery,pie dough? tons of pesto? homemade mayo? I chose almond butter. I know right! out of nowhere,but oh what a delish choice. I had the almonds, the food processor and the salt.I needed to pick up maple syrup and walnut oil.Walnut oil... it's high in omega 3's which helps fight off bad cholesterol and isn't refined so that leave us to enjoy a delicious oil that is very high in natural antioxidants.I got the maple syrup and the walnut oil,got down to breaking in my new favorite kitchen appliance.
 I found the recipe on . It looked fairly easy,I said " I got this." funny thing is now that I think about it it was snowing the evening I made the almond butter.It's finished up snowing for today,but I'm just sayin,coincidence,probably. So big batch or small batch this almond butter is so worth making.It's just sweet enough,with a hint of maple syrup and the natural sweetness of the almonds. The dash of salt added in balances out the sweetness really well.And oh goodness the texture is just divine. It's chunky even though it's smooth and a little,bitty bit of crunch thats softened by the smooth texture of the almonds.It's pefect for a peanut butter & jelly sandwich.I had this classic snack this afternoon with this Orange Plum Jam ,perfect for a snowy afternoon.
     I would also like to announce this is my first GIVEAWAY here at! Hooray for Orange Plum Jam. This jam has become one my favorites since canning season and well you need to have a jar. Comment at the end of this post and tell me about the most useful kitchen tool you have in your kitchen! I will choose the winner randomly and the giveaway will end this Sunday night,Jan.23,2011 at Midnight. The winner will be announced on Tuesday,Jan.25! 
Now stay focused,yay almond butter! So here's how goes it makin' that lucious almond butter,oohhh shiny food processor,high class:
You toss 1 1/2 cups of almonds with maple syrup. Roast the almonds at 325 degrees for 20 minutes,GENTLY stirring around half way through.
Let them cool for a little bit and toss them jokers in your food processor.(now if you have a smaller than say 9-cup food processor,you would have to make this in a few batches,so keep that in mind.)Pulse a few times to break up the nuts.Then drizzle in the walnut oil and run the food processor for 30 - 45 seconds continuously.
After you've added the oil and let it run for a tiny bit this is what it will look like.It will start  to roll itself into a ball.Be sure to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula.

Let the machine run a few more times for 30 -45 second intervals until it becomes way smoother and creamier.
It will eventually just get as smooth as it's going to get.Carefully scrape it into a small jar,the recipe will make almost a full 1/2 pint (8 ounces).
It was a great sandwich,the jam made it fabulous,the almond butter made it great.
adapted from
she was inspired by this cool blog
1 1/2 cups raw almonds
3 TBL maple syrup
pinch of sea salt
1-2 tsp walnut oil
1.Spread the nuts on a prchment-lined rimmed baking sheet or a baking mat.Drizzle the maple syrup over the nuts,toss with your fingers to coat as evenly as you can.
2.Roast at 325 degrees for 20 minutes,tossing at least once during roasting process.
3.When fully roasted,remove the pan from the oven.Let the nuts cool for 10 - 15 minutes.
4.Pour the nuts into the food processor,pulse to break up.Add a drizzle of the walnut oil and run the food processor for 30-45 seconds.Remove the lid,scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula.Repeat the process until completely broken down and as smooth as you would like it. *You might not need all the oil depending on the moisture content of the almonds.-Store in the fridge, not a super long lifetime,but will last for about a month in the fridge.Enjoy!


  1. The most helpful tool in my kitchen is my husband. But seriously, good knives. I grew up with crappy ones and never realized how much easier/faster it is to use good knives. :)

  2. The most helpful tool is my all in one mixer by Wolfgang Puck. I simply add attachments and can make homemade pasta, case sausages, blend drinks, etc.

    rmccoy1234 at yahoo dot com

  3. The most useful item in my kitchen is my food processor!! I use it all the time making baby food for Johnathan and also did it for Joseph!! Now I will have to use it to make the almond butter!! :) Yum!!

  4. Sharp knives are necessary!! Hi, by the way, this is Laura Weaver. I stumbles across your blog! I love it!!

  5. I'm really thrilled to hear that you made and like the almond butter!