Nut or seed butters…..yummmmmm!!! Who doesn’t love them?! So rich and fatty and delicious, but the good fats! Still be cautious not to overeat them…;)
You can make them using any nut or seed, doing a mix, adding spices and much more. Keeping it simple is good too. Tahini, or sesame seed butter, is used in multiple recipes in middle eastern cooking, in hummus for example. Almond Butter is great to have on toast or on an apple slice, or added to a smoothie to give a boost of protein and fats. There are so many uses for them.
Making nut/ seed butters at home is the best for two reasons: you know what goes in and it’s so much cheaper.
Let’s get down to the method, this is the basic recipe to make 1 cup butter:
→ 2 cup nut or seed, raw
→ pinch of salt
→ 1-2 tbls oil ( grapeseed is the most neutral in taste, coconut, sesame, sunflower etc.)
⇒NOTES: You don’t always have to add the oil, it depends on the nut or seed or if you want it creamier. Usually seeds will always need oil to help them out.
I’ve tried doing it without toasting them ( and keeping them raw) and it doesn’t come out as good but I shall try more. Also, since we are not soaking them, we are not getting rid of those antinutrients (enzyme inhibitors), but by toasting them we are making them more digestible, so that is another good reason to toast/roast them before.
Preheat your oven on 180 ° (300 F). Spread nuts or seeds on a baking sheet and toast until golden looking and fragrant. Nuts will take about 20-30 min, seeds will take 10-15 min. Remember to stir around with a spoon a few times while they are in the oven to make sure they all get toasted, be careful not to burn them, especially when dealing with seeds.
Transfer the nuts/seeds into a food processor, add a pinch of salt, turn on high. Once it has become a flour, you can then add the oil or wait a little longer to see if you don’t need to. It’s ok for the nuts/seeds to get warm, that is when their natural oils get released, but if it gets too hot, just stop the machine and let cool down slightly before continuing.
Depending on your machine the process will last between 2 to 5 minutes. Help your processor with a spatula to scrape down the sides.
Transfer to an airtight jar and store in the refrigerator, it will last for 1 month.
Below is an example of Sesame seed Butter, aka TAHINI:
To make 1.5 cups of Tahini:
→ 3 cups white sesame seeds
→ pinch of salt
→ 2 tbls sesame seed oil (cold pressed is best)
Toast the seeds (180° C or 300° F) for 15 minutes or until golden. Transfer to the processor (I used my Vitamix), add a pinch of salt and turn on. Once they turn into a flour, add the oil slowly. Help the machine with the built in spatula and keep it going until all is smooth.
Transfer into a jar, label it with the date and keep in the refrigerator for 1 month.
The dogs also enjoyed drinking some tahini diluted with water from cleaning the processor 😉
You want to have a healthy version of Nutella? Try making a Hazelnut-Cocoa butter:
→ 2 cups hazelnuts, raw
→ 2 1/2 tbls cocoa powder (raw is best)
→ pinch of salt
→ 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
→ honey or other sweetener to taste (optional)
Toast the hazelnuts following the instructions above. Then with a dishtowel rub them to get rid of their skins which are bitter. Place in the food processor, Once a butter has been made, add the rest of the ingredients, process together until you have a smooth buttery consistency. Transfer in jar.
Kids will love this!