Saturday, January 16, 2010

Make Your Own Peanut Butter and other Nut Butters

Make Your Own Peanut Butter
and other Nut Butters at Home

Basically you can make "butter" out of almost any type of nut and also from many types of seeds and grains. If you have access to peanuts, then you can make your own peanut butter at home. It would help greatly to have an electric food processor/chopper like a Cuisinart or other similar brand. You can use an electric blender, but you have to do it in small batches as the butter will be too thick for the blender blades to chop except right around the blade area.

- Prepare the nuts by removing shells. Or you can skip this step by buying already shucked nuts! I use about 3 to 4 cups of nuts for a batch.
- Lightly toast shelled nuts in oven, just a few minutes at medium heat, 350° F, don't let the nuts burn. Optional but highly recommended.
- Place nuts in food processor. Fill half full.
- Begin chopping nuts with a few short bursts to break up the nuts evenly. Continue chopping until nuts have been chopped and pureed into a smooth consistency. You will have to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula several times to get the nuts smoothly ground into butter.
- If you like chunky style peanut butter, I suggest saving out a 1/2 cup or so of the nuts to add after the bulk of the nuts have been chopped smooth. Add the reserved nuts and chop to your desired chunkiness.
- I do not add salt, but adjust to your taste.
- Scrape into a container with a tight fitting lid.
- Store in cupboard or cool dry place for up to 2 months.
- The longer the nut butter is stored, it may separate the solids from the nut's oil. No worries! just stir it back together and use.

I have made Nut Butters from many different types of nuts - almonds, cashews, pistachios, walnuts, hazelnuts, pecans.

Butters can also be made from seeds, though they are often called pastes instead of butters. One of the most famous seed type butters is widely used in Eastern Mediterranean and the Arabique cuisines - Tahini. It is made from ground sesame seeds. Seeds are easier to do with a food grinder than a food processor. If you have a food grinder you can also make nut butters using the grinder instead of a food processor.

Buon Appetito!


birdeeb said...

Which is your favorite of the nuts you have done? That sounds yummy! I have a food processor, but what type of blade do you use?

MrBill said...

One of my first nut-butter creations is still my favourite - pistachio! I first did pistachio because while I could find things like pecan, almond, and of course peanut and sesame seed butters and pastes, there was no ready made pistachio butter! My ladyfriend at the time was a pistachio lover and I made the butter as a gift. The first batch was incredibly labor intensive - shucking two pounds of pistachios is a lot of work, then roasting and finally grinding them. I have now been able to find one pound bags of raw shelled pistachios that I can just roast and grind.

Leah said...

Pistachio butter does sound delish :)

MrBill said...

Birdee, I use the regular chopping blade. Start with enough nuts to fill the processor bowl about half full, and pulse the chopper to begin with. With a rubber spatula scrape down the walls of the bowl and keep chopping and scraping until the nuts become a smooth paste (butter).