For several years now, I’ve been involved in a fantasy romance — with Almond Butter. I would see it in the grocery store, pick up a jar, gaze at it lovingly, then sadly return it to the shelf, unable to justify its $8.99-a-jar price tag. But recently, I just went nuts (hardy har har) and splurged on a jar. It was delicious, and now I’m hooked.
But instead of buying another jar, I figured, “Shoot, I can make that!” So I bought a $10 bag of almonds at Sam’s, did a little internet research, got out the food processor, and went to town. First things first, I roasted the almonds for five minutes. Easy.
Next, I dumped that tray of beautiful roasted almonds into my food processor.
At this point, a red flag should have gone up. I should have taken one look at that food processor and said, “You know, Josh, that could be too many almonds. Perhaps you should take some out.” But at the time, I was neck-deep in almond butter lust; I wanted this project yield me a massive fortune of almond butter that I could put in vault and swim in ala Scrooge McDuck. So I proceeded with the pulsing. Every recipe I looked at said to process the almonds for 3-5 minutes. After a VERY LOUD five minutes, I got this.
That, my friends, is five cups of almond flour. Not butter—flour. Dammit. Too many almonds in the bowl means too much almond dust, so the blades were spinning and no circulation was happening. So I proceeded to empty half of the almond rubble. Of course this was a very orderly and clean endeavor. RIGHT. I was practically buried in almond rubble. I was like Lois Lane, in that scene from Superman, when her car falls into the crevasse and all that dirt starts pouring in and it buries her and she suffocates and then Superman freaks out and makes the Earth spin backwards to bring her back to life… Anyway, so once I got myself unburied, I started pulsing again. And again. And again.
Pulse, scrape. Pulse, pulse—scrape-scrape-scrape. Pullllllllllllllllllse…scrape! Seriously…this went on for 30 minutes. This is not a like or an exaggeration. It’s the frustrating truth. At this point I began to understand the $9 price tag. Desperate to achieve almond butter nirvana, I began to add whatever I could to make the magic happen. Honey, vanilla extract, almond extra, ground flax seeds, oil…I even contemplated throwing the cat in. Finally, the mass began to morph into something resembling actual almond butter…
…or mud, which is what it actually looked like. And tasted like. Something happened during the 30 minutes of pulsing…I’m not sure exactly what. One theory is that the extreme heat generated by the blades altered the chemical makeup of the almonds, resulting in an odd taste that I still can’t identify. Another theory is that my food processor released some self-defense chemical in protest, which poisoned by beloved butter. Whatever the reason, the result was the same—four cups of inedible almond butter.
And here it sits on my desk at work…all that delicious potential, completely inedible. My hunger burns, but that little bowl of almond mush just mocks my desire. Well listen here, you little heartbreaker—I’m not done with you yet! You’ll see—one day, I’ll figure out how to make you the right way, and I’ll be eating almond butter in the sunshine. And I’ll be$9 richer. Just you wait. 😉