Back to snacking—I started posting about some favorite snacks last week, so let’s return to that subject. Because Snacks. It’s hard to go without a few in the course of a day, and making healthy snacking choices can be tough when you are SO TIRED OF BANANAS. (Bananas are the go-to snack at my house). So. Enter cashew butter and apple slices. Think: Carmel apple dip, only with nut butter. NomNomNom.
I started making all of my own nut butter back in September after reading an article about what kind of miscreant ingredients are contained in a typical jar of Skippy. And considering that we go through a large jar of peanut butter in about a week at my house, (lots of PB&J) a change was needed.
Nut butter is expensive no matter which way you spin it, because nuts in general are expensive. But if you can buy them in bulk, this will save you a bit. Cashews are my favorite nut, so cashew butter has become my nut-butter of choice. But you can make any flavor of nut butter with this method.
You will need a food processor for this job.
1 lb. of your favorite nuts, roasted.
1 tsp sea salt
2 teaspoons coconut oil
In a food processor, toss the roasted nuts, salt, and spoon the coconut oil on top. Snap the cover tightly into place, and whirl on high for about 3-5 minutes. This process is kinda noisy, so warn your little people or pets if they get nervous around loud noises.
When the butter is smooth, scrape into a sealable container. Refrigerate.
1 lb. of roasted nuts makes approximately 1 quart of nut butter.
Your bars are fantastic. Like whoa. When I stripped sugar and dairy and ALL THE TASTY THINGS out of my life for a while, you were there to pull me out of my emotional slump and remind me it was going to be okay. And you were right.
No apple pie? That’s okay because Apple Pie Larabars.
No chewy nut-ridden candy bars? That’s okay. You and your friend Clif, and Clif’s son Kit, devised a Cashew nut bar. (You are friends, right? Cuz he’s awesome. Or his bars are awesome anyway.)
Coconut cream pie? Coconut Cream Pie Larabar.
Pumpkin spice? Kit’s Cherry and Pumpkin Seed Bar.
It’s all good!
But Lara, and I really hope you don’t mind me saying this, your bar-count-per-box is way low. Like, for real. It just doesn’t work. I need more than five bars! At least Clif and Kit upped their game a little there. 12 bars per box. On point.
Whatever. It doesn’t matter. I can deal. In fact, I can more than deal!
Because all this to say thank you. Thanks for coming to my hangry rescue more than once and also for the inspiration.
Yah. You inspired me. Imitation is the highest form of flattery, right? Right.
So this is my best compliment then. And I can make more than 5 bars at a time. More than 12 even! So thanks Lara.
Hugs and kisses,
PUMPKIN-ALMOND FRUIT AND NUT BAR
(Inspired by Lara, Clif, and Kit)
1 cup dry roasted almonds
1/2 cup dry roasted and salted cashews
1/2 cup figs
1/4 cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup dry unsweetened coconut flakes
In a food processor, whirl all of the above ingredients except the coconut flakes. Keep in mind that depending on the size of your food processor, you may have to do this in batches.
The mixture should be very thick. You should not be able to really do more than poke it or move it around with a spoon. If it is more malleable than that, add coconut flakes as needed to thicken. If it is too thick, add more pumpkin. When you feel the consistency is good, dump and scrape the mixture into a foil or parchment lined 11×14 cake pan and press into the pan. Be quite firm, packing down the mixture until it is smooth and compressed. Pop the pan into the fridge for a couple of hours and then lift the whole thing from the pan within the foil or parchment paper. peal back the edges of the paper/foil and cut your bars to the desired size. Enjoy!
Ps. Lara, Clif, and Kit have no idea who I am. Neither do their affiliates, companies, organizations, or nutrition-gurus. This isn’t a sales plug so much as a tongue-in-cheek look at my own life-in-food. Kthanksbye.