Peanut Butter Chocolate Tarts

This past weekend, the boyfriend and I decided to hit up a vegan potluck in Toronto. At a loss for what to make, I was originally going to make some spinach (vegan) cheese phyllo triangles. Unfortunately I didn’t plan far enough ahead (I’m a bit off of my kitchen game lately it seems), and discovered that I wouldn’t have enough time to make these little guys because I’d have to let the pastry thaw for at least 5-6 hours. I’ve worked with this stuff many times before, and the best way to work with it without the sheets ripping is to do the thaw properly, and not use a microwave (or oven) to attempt a quick thaw.

So in the middle of the grocery store in panic mode, I decided to make something else. Thinking of some simple and quick desserts I’ve made in the past, I settled on throwing together some chocolate peanut butter tarts. One more thing – pie tart shells… Were they vegan? I look at the puff pastry – it had butter… Damn. I broke out in a sweat, hoping I wouldn’t have to Betty Crocker the tart shells due to buttery ingredients… I checked the tart shells, and score! They used vegetable based oils in the ingredients instead of butter. Happy Nikki.

So I tossed a package of shells in my basket, grabbed some more key ingredients, and went home to get started.

Oh, you may want to know what ingredients I used in these… So here you go! These are super simple to put together, and look really cute!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Tarts

Ingredients:

  • 15 mini pie tart shells

Peanut Butter Mousse

  • ½ cup silken tofu
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2-3 tbsp maple flavoured agave nectar (can sub. any liquid sweetener you like here, and this is purely to taste)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Chocolate Base

  • 3 squares unsweetened dark chocolate if using Baker’s chocolate. Otherwise, about ½ cup chopped dark chocolate of your choice
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar

Garnish

  • Slivered almonds

Method:

  • Bake the pie tart shells according to the package directions, and set aside to cool
  • Mix all ingredients for the peanut butter mousse in a food processor, and mix until combined. Allow to cool in the fridge while preparing the chocolate.
  • In a saucepan, melt the chocolate with the agave nectar. Once the chocolate is melted, spoon about 1 tsp of chocolate into each shell, and allow to cool for a few minutes.
  • Take the peanut butter mousse out of the fridge, and put about 1 tbsp of mousse in each shell.
  • Garnish with slivered almonds.
  • Eat, and enjoy! 🙂
Pre-moussing!

Pre-moussing!

 

Moussed and garnished!

Moussed and garnished!

Ready to serve! :)

Ready to serve! 🙂

 

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Vegan Peanut Butter Mousse

Hey everyone! It’s been a while since I’ve updated because I’ve been putting a lot of focus on my class project blog, so here’s a little something sweet to make up for it! Check out Accack of the Vegan’s Blog for an AMAZING peanut butter mousse recipe!

I’m not going to re-post the recipe, so you’ll have to give her blog a look-see to find it. 😉 My alterations to the recipe were that I used coconut sugar in place of regular sugar, silken tofu in place of hard tofu + soy milk, and I used agave nectar in place of molasses.

Here’s a picture of my serving of this delightful mousse! I highly suggest you give it a try…

YUM! Peanut butter mousse!

YUM! Peanut butter mousse!

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Protein Balls

Here’s a quick and simple sweet fix for people seeking out some energy and protein before or after their workout session! As I was making them, I couldn’t help but eat a few because they were so tasty! I’ve used peanut butter this time around, but have made them in the past with almond butter, sunflower seed butter (not my favourite…), and a mixture of walnut and peanut butter. These are calorie dense because of the peanut butter, though you probably won’t be too hungry after eating a batch of these. Here’s the recipe, enjoy! 🙂

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Protein Balls

Ingredients:

  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1/4 cup quick cooking rolled oats
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp carob chips
  • 3 tbsp natural peanut butter (or nut butter of your choice)
  • 2 tbsp honey

Method:

  • Mix all ingredients together in a bowl with your hands, and roll the dough out into little balls.
  • Place in a plastic baggie, and pop them in the fridge.
  • Let them harden for at least an hour. You can eat them right away if you like, but they taste better after being in the fridge for a bit.
An army of protein balls!

An army of protein balls!

Peanut Butter & Carob Chip Cookies

So, there’s a thing. Here’s the thing: I work part-time in a grocery store. I actually love working there, because I have some pretty awesome co-workers AND I’m surrounded by food. A majority of the customers are great, too. Half of the customers are people who I end up having some really interesting conversations with about food, and I’d have to say that that’s probably one of my favourite things about working there…

With all the greatness that comes with enjoying a part-time job, there is one downfall… Some customers buy really, really tasty and tempting bad foods. I lose count of how many people buy packs of cookies. On one day a few weeks ago, it seemed that every customer that came through the check-out had peanut butter cookies. Then, one customer who didn’t have cookies was buying all of the ingredients to make peanut butter cookies. I couldn’t take it anymore! After my shift was over, I rushed home to make some myself! Though I skipped on some of the more common ingredients, and made a healthy little alternative! Chocolate also happens to be a big weakness of mine, but I’ve gotten really into carob as a replacement for chocolate. (I still eat chocolate…)

Anyways, that’s the end of my story… So here’s a tasty, soft, and chewy twist on a basic peanut butter cookie! Enjoy! I sure did… 🙂

Peanut Butter & Carob Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup turbinado sugar (you can replace this with whatever type of sugar you have on hand, however I really enjoy the flavour of turbinado sugar)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup carob chips

Method:

  • Pre heat your oven to 350.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat, and set aside.
  • Add all dry ingredients into a bowl.
  • Add all wet ingredients to the dry ingredients.
  • Mix all until combined.
  • Spoon out about 2 tbsp of dough per cookies on the baking sheet. Press together with your fingers if it starts to fall apart.
  • Flatten the tops slightly with a fork, keeping the cookies about 3/4 of an inch thick.
  • If you like, sprinkle with a little more turbinado sugar.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the edges are LIGHTLY browned. Don’t bake for longer than 20 minutes, otherwise they will dry out.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  • Eat, and enjoy! 🙂

    So good... You need to taste these! :D

    So good... You need to taste these! 😀

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Waking up this morning, I was presented with a few dilemmas:

  1. There are three bananas on the counter coming up to that point where they’re past their prime, and I already have about 20 bananas in the freezer for smoothies.
  2. I have a nice, nasty little cold right now, which makes me crave sweets as a comfort food. I’m trying to eat healthy, so I don’t want to go out to get junk food.
  3. Because I’m sick, there’s no way I’m going to go out and get junk food. I’m surprised I can even get off of the couch for more than five minutes.

The solution: healthy cookies with bananas! These turned out so soft, and so yummy… There’s no butter, no eggs, no junky stuff, and barely any sugar. They’re filled with a whole bunch of flavour and goodness! This recipe makes 12 medium-sized cookies, about an inch thick. They almost have a cake-like texture, very similar to a chocolate crueller or something. I am embarrassed to admit that I’ve already eaten four of these. Anyways, here’s the recipe, enjoy! 🙂

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 1/2 cup quick cooking rolled oats
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp ground flax-seed
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup vanilla almond milk (or milk of your choice)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp organic cane sugar (this obviously isn’t a wet ingredient, but is mixed in with them anyways)
  • 1/4 cup natural creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ripe banana

Solid Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup carob chips (you can use regular chocolate chips if you like, I just really LOVE carob chips.)
  • 1/2 cup crushed walnut pieces (this is optional also, so feel free to omit if you don’t like walnuts.)

Method:

  • Pre heat your oven to 325 F for convection ovens. (If not using a convection oven, pre heat to 350 F)
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat (or any silicone baking mat), and set aside.
  • In a bowl, sift together all dry ingredients.
  • In another bowl, mash the banana, and add all wet ingredients to the mashed banana.
  • Pour the wet into the dry.
  • Add the solid ingredients, and stir together until everything is combined.
  • Because it’s a dough that’s a bit on the dry side, I like to get my hands right in there and mush it all together, so don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty!
  • Using your hands, shape pieces of the dough into balls about the size of a golf ball (or a little bigger), and press into a patty that is about 1 inch thick. These don’t really spread while baking, but you also want to make sure that they maintain that cake-like texture because it’s pretty darn good!
  • Once all of the dough is shaped and on the baking sheet, pop it into your oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes. Make sure to check the cookies at 15 minutes. The bottoms of the cookies will be slightly darker than the rest of the cookie. If it’s looking a lot darker, take them out!
  • Allow to cool for about 15 minutes, then eat and enjoy! 🙂
  • Note: I made these in a convection oven, so my cooking time was longer. (Lower temperature, slightly longer cooking time, however they cook perfectly even.) So if you don’t have a convection oven, keep it at 350 F, and cook for 10-15 minutes.

    Three tasty (and guilt-free!) cookies with an almond milk latte. Now that's a tasty snack! :)

    Three tasty (and guilt-free!) cookies with an almond milk latte. Now that’s a tasty snack! 🙂

Peanut Butter & Banana Maple Bran Muffins

I can’t believe how tasty these muffins are! They aren’t too sweet, and they’ve got the perfect blend of banana, maple and peanut butter. 🙂 The husband and I both enjoyed these! There’s not much more to say about them, so here’s the recipe! This recipe makes 6 muffins. Enjoy! 🙂

Peanut Butter & Banana Maple Bran Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 wheat bran
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 ripe banana, peeled and mashed
  • 1 egg
  • seeds scraped from 1/2 of a vanilla bean pod (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter maple syrup (1/4 cup each of peanut butter and maple syrup, mixed until combined. Great over pancakes! 😉 )
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil

Method:

  • Pre heat your oven to 375 F, and line a muffin tin with 6 paper muffin cups. (I used large-sized ones.)
  • Mix all wet ingredients, plus the sugar, in a bowl.
  • Sift the dry ingredients together in a separate bowl.
  • Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, and mix together just until combined.
  • Spoon batter into the lined muffin cups, and bake for about 15 minutes. (Check the muffins at 10 minutes with a tooth pick poked into the middle of the muffin. If there’s any wet batter on the tooth pick, cook the muffins a bit longer. All ovens are different, so use your judgement here!)
  • Optional: sprinkle some cinnamon sugar (equal parts white sugar and ground cinnamon) on top of each muffin, along with some crushed walnut chunks.
  • Allow the muffins to cool in the tin for a couple of minutes before removing them from the tin.
I should call this the "Elvis Muffin" :)

I should call this the "Elvis Muffin" 🙂

Daring Cooks Challenge – August 2010 – THE WORLD OF PIEROGI!

The August 2010 Daring Cooks’ Challenge was hosted by  LizG of Bits n’ Bites and Anula of Anula’s Kitchen. They chose to challenge Daring Cooks to make pierogi from scratch and an optional challenge to provide one filling that best represents their locale.

I literally put this challenge off until the last possible minute. 😉 Somehow, I’m one of those people who actually works better under pressure. 🙂 {After all, this is a challenge, right? The race against the clock was a pretty good challenge for me…} 

My first memory of a pierogi goes back to when I was 10 years old. One of my best friends in grade school, Angela, used to have me over to her house for dinner and a sleep-over many weekends throughout the year. My favourite thing about those sleep overs was the pierogi that her mom used to make. She made ones filled with potato and bacon for dinner, followed by blueberry and cream stuffed pierogi for dessert. I don’t know what it was about these doughy little puff-bubbles of flavour, but there was just something about them that I couldn’t resist! I always thought they’d be so hard to make, so I had never attempted them. Though, after making pasta from scratch, these were definitely on the list of things to do!

Here is a copy of the original recipes and methods listed on the Daring Kitchen in PDF format. You can also visit the Daring Kitchen’s website. Please refer to this for any questions regarding the whole pierogi experience if nothing I post makes any sense. 😉

For my pierogi, I decided to make them whole wheat. Reason one being that I don’t like to use white flour for ANYTHING if I can help it… Reason two being that I didn’t have anything BUT whole wheat flour, and am a little too cheap to go out and buy flour that I will only use once. 😉 So instead of yapping away, I’ll get to the recipe I did for both the dough {I didn’t do the recipe as posted, but the one I put together turned out SOOOOOO tasty! Yay! 🙂 } and the filling. I decided to go for a sweet dish, which can be used either for dessert or breakfast. So for this post, I will be posting about my specific experience with this challenge. As mentioned above, visit The Daring Kitchen for the original recipes. I really enjoyed this challenge, because we were given full creativity when it came to the pierogi dough and fillings. The only thing we HAD to do was make both the dough and the filling from scratch. What a great challenge! 🙂 I will definitely make these again, and with other flavours! Enjoy! 🙂

Peanut Butter Whole Wheat Pierogi with Maple Peanut Butter Sauce

Ingredients:

  • Dough: 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla sugar
  • 1 egg white
  • about 1/3 cup warm water
  • pinch of salt
  • Filling: 2 tbsp graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 1/2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp smooth natural peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp dried cranberries
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter chips
  • 2 tbsp mini semi sweet chocolate chips {you can omit the peanut butter and chocolate chips to keep it healthy… 😉 }
  • 2 tbsp plain non-fat yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Method:

  • For the filling: mix all ingredients in a bowl, and set aside. {Yeah, it’s simple. 🙂 }
  • For the dough: place the flour into a bowl, and create a well in the middle.
  • Pour the salt, vanilla sugar, egg and water in the middle. Stir until mixed.
  • Add a bit more water if the dough is too dry, or add a bit more flour of the dough is too sticky.
  • At this point, knead the dough a bit on a lightly floured surface, or keep kneading it in the bowl.
  • Cover the bowl with a towel, and allow to rest for about 20 minutes.
  • Remove the dough from the bowl, and roll out onto a flat, lightly floured surface.
  • Roll it out to about 2 mm thickness.
  • Take a glass or a cookie cutter about 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter, and cut circles out of the dough. Take the scraps, and roll them out to cut more circles.
  • Place the circles on the flat surface, and fill each one with about 1/2 tsp of the filling. Make sure the filling is RIGHT in the middle.
  • Here’s the messy part: Pressing the pierogi closed. I wish I could explain it better, but I can’t. If you don’t have a press for it, because I sure don’t, then you have to do it by hand… I made a few mistakes, but that’s alright… Just fold the dough over carefully, and squeeze the outside edges together, but not too hard or you’ll rip the dough. Make sure you don’t get any filling sticking out of the sides, and if you do… Well, wipe it off. There’s a good chance the edges won’t stick together if there’s filling oozing out, though I didn’t have any problems with filling bursting out while cooking. 🙂
  • Once all of the pierogi are stuffed and pressed closed, set them aside.
  • Fill a pot half way with water, sprinkle some salt into the water, and bring to a boil on high heat.
  • Once the water is boiling, drop the pierogi in. {Only do a few at a time, I did this batch in quarters.} Make sure none of the pierogi are over-lapping each other.
  • Allow the water to return to a boil, and then reduce to medium heat. Let them simmer until all of the pierogi have started floating at the top of the water. Once they’re all floating, set a timer for 5 minutes.
  • Once the 5 minutes is up, use a slotted spoon to remove the pierogi and put them on a plate. {You may want to line the plate with paper towel…}
  • Repeat this boil method until all of the pierogi are done.
  • Now you can eat them, served with whatever topping you like! OR:
  • Get a frying pan. Drizzle a SMALL AMOUNT {say, 1/2 tsp} of extra virgin olive oil, and set the heat to medium.
  • Place the first set of pierogi on the pan, and fry for a couple of minutes on each side. The time will depend on the texture you want. If you want them a bit crispy, keep them on longer, but just make sure you don’t burn them!
  • Set the cooked ones on a plate, and eat them served with whatever topping you like! 🙂
  • Freezing the pierogi: If you want to make a massive batch and freeze them for a later date, you can! After the boiling is finished, set the pierogi aside on a paper towel lined plate. Allow them to cool completely. Place a sheet of parchment paper on a cookie sheet, and place the pierogi on the sheet. Put the sheet in the freezer, and allow them to freeze for about 30 minutes. Once hard and cold, move the pierogi into a freezer bag. To prepare again, simply bring a pot of water to a boil, and prepare the frozen pierogi as you would the fresh ones. You can then fry them if you like.

Peanut Butter Maple Sauce for the Pierogi

Ingredients:

  • Left over filling for the pierogi
  • As much maple syrup as you like

Method:

  • This is a tough one folks. I hope you’re ready…
  • Add some maple syrup to the bowl of pierogi filling, and stir.
  • Drizzle over the cooked pierogi.
  • Ta-Da! You’re  now ready to eat your sweet little pierogi.

Here’s some visuals! 🙂

ready to roll! ;)

ready to roll! 😉

pretty circles...

pretty circles...

about to be boiled!

about to be boiled!

time to dig in! ;)

time to dig in! 😉

yum yum yum yum....

yum yum yum yum....

they don't last that long after the first taste... Good thing I froze some for the husband to have tomorrow! ;)

they don't last that long after the first taste... Good thing I froze some for the husband to have tomorrow! 😉

...almost gone... ;)

...almost gone... 😉

Peanut Butter Biscotti

Beam me a biscotti! 

{Heehee, you may not get that unless you were a fan of the show “Breaker High” that aired on YTV in the late ’90s. 😉 } 

Something about twice-baked cookies makes me really happy… I love how crunchy a good biscotti is, and that hard texture makes it the perfect food to have alongside a great cup of coffee {or other hot beverage}. It just screams “dip me in that steaming liquid!”, and doesn’t fall apart like other cookies. 

The name biscotti is derived from ‘bis’ meaning twice in Italian and ‘cotto’ meaning baked or cooked. ~Joy of Baking 

 

My favourite biscotti was a mocha almond one that I made about a year ago, and I haven’t made any since then. Not too sure why… So today, I decided I’d make some! One flavour of biscotti that I can’t seem to find anywhere is peanut butter. I usually see chocolate chip, lemon poppy-seed, mocha, vanilla, and a few others… But still, no peanut butter. So I tossed some peanuts and honey into the blender to make some peanut butter, and got to work on these crispy little wonders! 🙂 Here’s my recipe for a {healthier-than-most} peanut butter biscotti. This recipe makes around 16 cookies, or more if you cut them smaller. I always cut each cookie in two.  Enjoy! 🙂 

Peanut Butter Biscotti 

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped peanuts
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter {click here to see how to make your own! You can also use store-bought if you like.}
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar {you can substitute with a different type of sugar, or decrease/increase the amount to your own taste}
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp maple extract
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt

Method

  • Pre heat your oven to 350 F.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, mix the butter and peanut butter.
  • Add the chopped nuts and sugar, and stir.
  • Add the egg and extract, then stir again.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients {all dry ingredients}, and stir until well combined.
  • Pick the dough up with your hands, and roll it out on the counter/cutting board. Pat it into a log about 1/2 inch thick. Place the dough onto the prepared baking sheet. {You may need to reshape the log once moved to the baking sheet.}
  • Bake for about 30 minutes until the top is no longer sticky {it will become slightly firm}, and the edges will be golden.
  • Remove from the oven, and let cool for 2 minutes
  • Using a large sharp knife, carefully cut the log into slices about 3/4 inch wide. Cut the slices on a slight diagonal line to give a prettier look. 🙂
  • Sliced and ready for the second bake!

    Sliced and ready for the second bake!

     

  • Give the slices a bit of breathing space, about 1 cm between each piece works well.
  • Place the baking sheet back in the oven, and bake for another 15-20 minutes. {The bottoms will be browned, and the biscotti will appear slightly dried out. Do not bake at this stage for longer than 20 minutes, or you will end up with biscotti rocks. No one likes to eat rocks… When you press your finger on the top of one, it will give in a little bit, but not much. Note: when the biscotti are cooled, they will be much harder, so do not over cook!}
  • Once done, remove the baking sheet from the oven. Take each biscotti, and allow to cool on a paper towel. {Don’t leave them on the hot baking sheet to cool.}
  • Once cool, you can dip in your beverage as is, or drizzle the biscotti with any chocolate of your choice! 🙂
  • These can be stored for about 1 week at room temperature, or frozen for a few weeks.
Mmmm... Served with coffee! :)

Mmmm... Served with coffee! 🙂

Peanut Butter Brownies with Peanut Butter & Chocolate Frosting

While looking through a massive gallery of food pictures that I had uploaded onto my laptop, I stumbled upon a few pictures of some peanut butter brownies that I had made a couple of weeks ago that I never got around to posting. {What an outrage! 😉 } Normally when I make a batch of any baked goods {cupcakes, brownies, cookies}, the last one or two won’t get eaten if it’s just for Joe and myself or I forget to bring the rest to work. {Come on, we’re not totally pigs… Sometimes 12 mini cupcakes is just TOO much to eat!} But somehow, these little guys were cleared off of the plate, crumbs and all, within the evening that they were made. {Joe really can’t resist anything with peanut butter! Yes… It was all Joe… *shifty eyes*…} So to make sure this recipe doesn’t get lost in amongst the many scraps of paper that hold my random recipes, {and to give you all a chance to try these if you wish!}, here is my recipe for some tasty peanut butter brownies with a chocolate peanut butter frosting. Enjoy! 🙂 This recipe makes 12 mini cupcake-sized brownies. {I used a mini cupcake tin with mini cupcake cups.}

Peanut Butter Brownies with Peanut Butter & Chocolate Frosting

Ingredients:

Method:

  • Pre heat the oven to 350 F.
  • Line a mini muffin pan with paper liners. Set aside.
  • In a microwave safe bowl, microwave the peanut butter and milk on high at 15 second intervals. Stir at each interval for a few seconds, and repeat this until all is melted together.
  • After it’s melted, allow to cool for a minute.
  • Add in the sugar, vanilla and eggs, and mix well.
  • Add in the flour, and mix just until combined.
  • Place about 1 tbsp of batter into each mini muffin cup. {Or however much it takes to fill up each cup just below the top.}
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes, removing from the oven once a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean with a couple of moist crumbs attached. The tops will appear somewhat dry and shiny.
  • Remove from the muffin tin, and allow brownies to cool on a rack. Frost when cool.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

Ingredients:

  • 50 ml peanut butter
  • 2 oz chocolate

Method:

  • Melt the peanut butter and chocolate in a microwave safe bowl at 15 second intervals in the microwave on high heat, stirring at each interval. Repeat this until the chocolate is melted.
  • Spread the frosting over the brownies, and allow to set. Or, eat right away! 🙂

 

peanut butter brownies... *drools*

peanut butter brownies... *drools*

 

Honey Almond Butter

Growing up, one of the most common sandwiches I had for my lunches was peanut butter & jelly. It was simple and satisfying. In the past few years, I’ve come to the realization that I have a new favourite over peanut butter: almond butter! I would usually buy the pre-made stuff from the grocery store, but at just over $6 per jar, it was getting a little expensive… Bulk Barn has a lot of different spreads and nut butters, which is great… However, the almond butter from there had a bit of an odd taste. On my last trip there, I decided to buy a large quantity of almonds instead of almond butter, and give it a go myself! I’m really glad I did, because this home-made almond butter turned out WAY better than any I’ve ever bought from a store in the past! It’s so simple that anyone can do it, and you can literally JUST use almonds for this recipe. You can also use other types of nuts, or combine nuts for an interesting flavour. You can sweeten it as you like, or not. And if you want a really creamy spread, you can add a little bit of extra virgin olive oil. You can also add in other flavours like vanilla, cinnamon, or even some cocoa powder! Here’s what I did for my honey almond butter, enjoy! 🙂

Honey Almond Butter

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw almonds, out of shell
  • 1-2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-2 tbsp golden liquid honey

Method:

  • You can make this nut butter with raw almonds if you like. For mine, I toasted my almonds. If toasting, pre heat your oven to 350 F. Spread the almonds in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Bake until fragrant, about 8 minutes.
  • Remove the almonds from the oven, and allow to cool.
  • In a blender or a food processor, blend 1/2 cup of the almonds until all almonds are ground. Almonds do have their own natural oils, but using extra virgin olive oil will make the spread a lot smoother. You can use less or more oil depending on the texture you want. Add half of the oil you are using to the blender once the almonds are crumbs, use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the blender jar, and blend some more until the almonds are a desired consistency. You may need to scrape down the sides of the jar every few seconds. This whole process can take up to 10 minutes.
  • Once the desired consistency is reached, use a spatula to assist in pouring the butter into a jar or plastic container that can be sealed. Repeat the previous step with the remaining 1/2 cup of almonds and oil.
  • After all of the butter is poured into the jar, add the honey, and stir until combined.
  • This almond butter will keep at room temperature for about 1 week. {Mine is almost finished, and it hasn’t even been a week… 😉 } For other nut butters such as peanut butter, it’s best to store in the fridge to prevent it from going rancid. After 1 week, store any left over almond butter in the fridge. Bring to room temperature for about 20 minutes for an easier spread.