My favourite nut butters
Nut butters are a staple in a lot of my recipes. There are always several jars in my fridge and they seem to disappear awfully quickly!
My husband is one of those people with an enviably fast metabolism and he gets through my peanut butter quicker than Usain Bolt across that racing course. I am not kidding you. Trying to feed him up is like pouring water into a leaky bucket.
Nut butters can be used in sweet and savoury dishes; they make food so much creamier while adding healthy fats and even some protein! Oh yes. I mentioned the p-word. Nuts contain some protein as well as the aforementioned fats so they help to slow down the release of sugars into your blood stream, which means your body doesn’t produce so much insulin and you don’t get that blood sugar spike followed by the dreaded crash. This in turn means that you are way less likely to reach for the biscuit tin a couple of hours after eating. Nuts to the rescue!
I love to add cashew butter to soups and stews instead of cream. Peanut butter is super-delicious in Asian cooking and my truffled sunbutter makes an amazing pasta sauce if you add a little bit of the cooking water and whisk it energetically before adding it to spiralised courgette in lieu of regular spaghetti.
Tahini or peanut butter make salad dressings super creamy and definitely more-ish. You’ll get the most avid salad hater so tuck in with gusto if you present them with a nut butter fortified dressing. Guaranteed.
Nut butters also make amazing snacks – you can scoff some almond butter smothered on slices of fresh, crisp apples or try giant amounts of peanut on banana. My personal favourite by far. Be warned though; only smother the peanut butter on generously if you are blessed with a fast metabolism. Personally, I have to be a little careful if I don’t want to pad out my Nigella-esque curves even further. Trust me on this; I wolfed down large amounts of banana with even larger amounts of peanut butter when I started to breastfeed my baby and I actually managed to gain weight. Yes, you read that right. Breastfeeding sadly is no guarantee that you lose that baby weight. Especially not if you plough through nut butter like it’s going out of fashion with a VERY unforgiving metabolism. I am not complaining though, my body grew and birthed a new human being and she now feeds him exclusively so I have nothing but gratitude and awe for her. LOVR YOUR BODY, PEOPLE!
If you don’t have any fruit handy you can use oatcakes as a base for your favourite nut butter, it’s just as nutritious and delicious! My best friend Neil likes to smother his with chocolate-hazelnut butter and add some dark chocolate squares to top it of. Healthy treat alert!
So, without much further ado here’s the recipe for my favorite cashew-vanilla butter.
- 500g cashew nuts
- 1 TBS ground bourbon vanilla
- a pinch of sea salt
- Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius
- Roast the nuts for 10-15 mins and let them cool down to room temperature
- Put them into a good food processor or a Thermomix and blitz for 1 minute at maximum capacity to a fine flour
- Churn for another 15 minutes at medium speed until a creamy paste has formed
- If you like your nut butter smoother mix blend for another minute at full speed
- Add the remaining ingredients and continue churning for a minute
- Pour into a sterilised jar, allow to cool and keep in the fridge