First off, I have a funny, albeit slightly embarrassing story to tell you about my first experience with Almond butter.
I've always loved cooking and all it entails. For me it is a creative outlet. Chopping, sauteing, deglazing ect. are all de-stressors for me. I love that it is an expression of art in a lot of ways and that you can really change and experiment with the ingredients to create a flavor that is just right for your mood or tastes. Baking however, IMHO is another story. Yes, you can change the ingredients a little for the most part, exchanging one flour for another or a bit of applesauce for some of the butter, but really you usually need to be pretty exact to get a result that was worth your efforts ie. 'A Big Fat Mess' at my house.
Anyway, waaay back when I was just a novice little baker (errhegmmm, a few short years ago), I had some recipe that called for Almond Butter. In my mind, I was thinking it was just regular butter flavored with almonds and so I thought, I can just make my own and save a trip to the store...........
And so, I proceeded to take a cup of butter from the fridge and poured a few teaspoons of almond extract into it and creamed it up into my cookies. I told you, embarrassing.
It wasn't long before 2 and 2 clicked together and I realized that I had created the butteriest, greasiest, most disgusting cookies ever. Pooor cookies. Poor me. So while this was at the time very frustrating and humbling, I did end up discovering what in fact Almond Butter actually was. Goober, I know.
Speaking of what a goober I am, I am probably one of the only people in America who does not like peanut butter. *gasp!
Never liked PBandJ's or apples with peanut butter as a kid. As a health conscience adult I've tried to like peanut butter, at least with apples or in recipes but it's just not my fav. I do however L.O.V.E. Almond Butter. Go figure. Almond Butter has a very mild and less 'toasty' taste compared to peanut butter and is very decadent and naturally sweet.
I've listed a Nutritional Comparison Chart below, based on a 2,000 calorie a day diet in case your interested. Both peanut and almond butter are good for you and pretty similar except that Almond Butter has slightly less carbs and saturated fat and quite a bit more Calcium, Iron and Vitamin E.
2 tbsp. Peanut Butter 2 tbsp. Almond Butter
Calories 190 190
Total Fat (g) 16 16
Saturated Fat (g) 2 1.5
Carbs (g) 7 6
Fiber (g) 3 4
Protein (g) 8 7
Calcium 1% 8%
Iron 3% 6%
Vitamin E 14% 40%
Folate 6% 6%
|Choose baking powder that is aluminum free!|
Almond Butter and Banana Pancakes
SERVES 4-6 TIME 15 MINUTES
1 cup Whole Wheat flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder (*without the aluminum additive!)
1/2 teaspoon salt (*preferably iodized)
1/2 cup creamy Almond Butter (preferably Organic)
2 tablespoons sugar (preferably Organic/Raw)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large egg (preferably free range)
1 cup milk + 2 tablespoons milk (*preferably Organic or w/out rHsbt hormone)
2-3 ripe bananas (don't need to be Organic ;)
tablespoon of butter for griddle.
In large bowl mix together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
In small bowl, whisk together peanut butter, sugar and oil until smooth. Beat in egg, then milk. Add 1 chopped banana.
Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture, stirring just until blended.
Lightly coat griddle or skillet with butter and heat it over medium heat.
Drop batter onto the griddle and cook until tiny bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake, then flip and cook a few minutes more.
*Careful, these burn easily. I suggest making small pancakes so they won't be undercooked in the middle before they burn.
Serve with pure maple syrup and top with sliced bananas and a glass of ice cold chocolate milk! My 16 year old likes these with jam on top.