Monday, July 16, 2012

Dark Chocolate Coconut Walnut Butter

Confession: I was scared to make walnut butter. The acidity factor of walnuts with a warm bowl of oatmeal did not sound pleasant or cozy or like any of those other warm fuzzy feelings that nut butter and oats is supposed to create. I imagined this dry spread that would make my tongue ache and my eyes water... and who wants that to start their day? Not me! However, I knew the walnuts in my fridge were going to go rancid if I didn't act fast so this morning I decided to transform them into batch of nut butter.  

With a little pantry digging, inspiration, and creativity I give you:

*Dark Chocolate Coconut Walnut Butter *

But I need to be honest about another thing: I used cashews too. I told you I was scared! And they were the perfect compliment to the walnuts. The taste of creamy smooth cashews and omega packed walnuts mixed together with dark chocolate and kisses of coconut will leave you saying - give me another spoonful of fatty goodness please!

2 cups toasted walnuts*
1 cup toasted cashews*
3 oz 72% dark chocolate
1 Tbsp coconut oil
1/3 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1/3 cup raw cocoa nibs

Process walnuts and cashews in the food processor until smooth and buttery (about 5 minutes - it depends on the power of your machine). Meanwhile, heat coconut oil and chocolate in a small sauce pan until the chocolate is melted. Pour the melted chocolate into the food processor and process until completely incorporated. Add the shredded coconut and cocoa nibs and process for another 15 seconds or so - you want to make sure that you still get some nice coconut flakes and nibs when you're enjoying your nut butter. Unless you prefer it smooth, in which case process to your hearts content. And there you have it: glorious, drippy nut butter.

Deny it as you may (or may not), you secretly want and need to make this nut butter. And want to know the best part, aside from the dark chocolate? Walnuts go rancid quickly so the quicker you eat this spread the better. Get on it!

* Nutty Note: I always soak my nuts prior to aid with digestion. This can be done by putting the the nuts in a glass jar, adding some sea salt, filling the jar with water and then letting them sit out for 7 - 12 hours. If your soaking walnuts, put those bad boys in the fridge to soak. When they're done soaking, drain the nuts, spread them onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and toast them in the oven at 150 degrees for 6 hours or until crispy. I've found that 4 hours is actually enough to crisp the nuts, but sometimes I bump up the heat to 200 for about an hour then drop it back down. Let the nuts cool and store in a sealed glass jar until needed. Again, if you're working with walnuts store them in the fridge once they are toasted.

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