When it comes to making almond butter, or any nut butter, I am an epic failure. I just cannot get it completely, totally right. Mild success, sure. It happened once upon a time. But the resulting concoction wasn't nearly as good as my store-bought favorite, so I wasn't completely satisfied. Tuesday night, I found mild success again.
Cuisinart Mini-Prep, shown at right. And can I just say_I love it dearly. However! I've come to realize that it isn't made for making nut butters. Not even small batches. For starters, the bowl is too small. If I put more than a cup of almonds in it, it can't keep up. And when you make nut butters, you have to let the processor process for a good 15 minutes at the very least. This little guy I have, you have to hold the button down to make it process. That's a lot of holding, m'dears. I've got other things to do. But I do love nut butters, so I've been sacrificing my time in the good name of nut butter experimentation. But like I said before, there hasn't been much solid success. Mini-Prep started smoking this time around.
I tried to follow Ashley's Roasted Maple Cinnamon Almond Butter recipe. I had some almonds, it sounded good. Why not?! Into the oven the almonds went, out they came and I was ready to fight the battle yet again. So I spooned in one cup of the almonds, started processing and simply just waited. And waited. And waited some more. It was chopping up nice and fine, but it wasn't coming together like a good almond butter should. And the Mini-Prep was getting rather hot to the touch. Ashley suggests adding some oil to bring it together, so I added olive oil. (It was either that or Canola, so I opted for the former of the two. It didn't affect the taste.) It seemed to work, but when I stopped processing, I noticed the smell of overworked electrics. And yeah, just a slight bit of steam (was it smoke?) coming out of the base. Lucky for me, it had come together decently enough. Well, enough to warrant putting it into a little jar for safe keeping. But I still had another cup full of almonds to process. I couldn't let them go to waste. So into Mini-Prep they went.
And this is when things just didn't work out for me. MP had enough, and it was basically refusing to work at a speed that would be efficient enough to continue. And so, I was forced to empty the contents of the bowl into a nice plastic container suitable for storing chopped up almonds of the Roasted Maple Cinnamon variety. I'm glad I saved them. They made for quite the delicious oatmeal topper yesterday morning:
Question: Have you had any success making nut butters at home? What food processor do you use?