Inspired by a recent conversation on Facebook, I decided to start putting up recipes on this page and I am starting with an alternative to a cupboard staple that many take for granted. Things like chocolate spread and peanut butters have been enjoyed by children and adults for decades and they are considered by some as a cupboard essential.
When you suffer from allergies and/or intolerances, sometimes you cannot just grab a jar off the supermarket shelf, instead, you might try to look for alternatives, try to make your own or even give up.
I regularly make preserves, condiments and seed butters and keep in small jars in the fridge. This way at least I know what's in them, no hidden ingredients, no guessing and they keep for a long time in perfect condition.
To make seed butter all you need is your choice of seeds, oil and a coffee grinder or food processor. I personally cannot be without my Bamix, but I wish they come in bigger sizes.
Sunflower seeds are the tastiest of all seed butters and closest in taste to peanut butter, but other seeds work equally good. You can use any or a combination of seeds that are either raw or slightly dry toasted in the pan, choose from: Sunflower seeds, Pumpkin seeds, Flax seeds and hemp seeds. If allergy permits, you can also use sesame, pine kernels or almonds.
If you are toasting your seeds place them in a heavy based frying pan on moderate heat and keep stirring to prevent them from burning until nicely toasted. Leave to cool before grinding to prevent your machine from overheating.
Start by dry grinding your choice of seeds, shaking the grinder every now and then to make sure all the seeds are worked through. After about five minutes, more or less depending on the power of your machine, the seeds will begin to release their natural oils and you will find that the ground seeds are beginning to stick to the sides of the processor bowl. Scrape it down and continue for another 2-3 minutes to achieve a smooth consistency if you don’t like your spread crunchy.
After reaching the right consistency, gradually add about 2 tbsps. sunflower or rapeseed oil while processing until you achieve a smooth spreadable consistency and you’re done.
Keep the seed butter in a tightly sealed container in the fridge ready to be enjoyed on toast for breakfast or anytime snack.
Nut Free Chocolate Spread Recipe
120g Dark chocolate (I use Belcolade 96% cocoa but Kinnerton or any dark chocolate of your choice works equally well)
60g Butter substitute of your choice (I use Pure dairy free sunflower spread)
120g Honey or Agave syrup (less if your chocolate is sweetened)
120ml Rice milk or your choice of milk
100g Ground Sunflower seeds (optional)
- Place a pan of simmering water on a medium heat. Put the chocolate, honey and butter in a glass bowl or pan that can sit steadily on top of the water pan, making sure the bottom does not sit in the water.
- Stir every now and then until the chocolate is completely melted
- Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly until all is very well combined with a smooth and shiny finish
- Add the ground seeds if using and remove from the heat.
- Fill in small jars or glass containers, cover and leave to cool at room temperature. As it cools it will thicken to a spreadable consistency.
- Enjoy on toast, crackers, rice cakes, fruit or anything you fancy.