On My To Do List
Are you a list maker? How do you stay organized and on top of things? I often make piles to keep things neat. A stack of things is less distracting than having papers and books strewn across my desk. I also make lots of lists. I like having a reminder of everything that I hope to accomplish in the short term. I used to write my To Do lists on scraps of paper. More recently I’ve created a dedicated notebook for to do lists, thoughts, ideas and information that I need to jot down somewhere.
I used to make the mistake of keeping these lists and important dates or events in my head. Although they usually stayed up there, I felt like I had to constantly remind myself of what I needed to do. I would become very overwhelmed. So I started writing it down. I love having a space to keep my ideas. It gets messy as I scribble down thoughts and rewrite my lists but when I need a clear space to think and work, I close the book. When I know there are things I need to get done, I open to my most recent draft of To Do and attempt to cross off and item or two.
One thing that was on my mental list for a couple of months until I finally penned it down was making nut butters. Despite my penchant for making food from scratch I hadn’t really thought about making peanut or almond butter until I saw recipes here and there. It took some time for me to get around to making almond butter, but it turns out to be really simple. A few handfuls of nuts, cracked and whirred in the food processor yields a creamy spread that is perfect on toast, apples or bananas, in a sandwich or straight from the spoon.
Although I have crossed make almond butter off my list, I am sure that I will keep making it regularly. I might have to add homemade Nutella to my next to do list.
I have used both raw and roasted almonds for this nut butter, but the roasting really brings out the flavor of the almonds and I think it is much better that way.
2 cups almonds
1/2 teaspoon salt, optional
Almond oil, or other neutral oil, optional
Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and roast at 350 for about 15 minutes, checking frequently to make sure that they are roasting but not burning. The skin will get darker and the meat of the almond will turn golden brown. Let cool.
Place the almonds and salt (if using) in the bowl of a food processor. It will be quite loud at first, but turn on the food processor for a minute or so. After a minute, scrape down the sides with a spatula and process for another minute. Scrape the sides again. Continue doing this for several minutes (stopping to scrape the sides regularly) until the almonds become a smooth paste. If you want a smoother, softer almond butter, you can add the oil, a teaspoon at a time, and process the paste to blend.
2 cups of almonds yields about 3/4 of a cup of almond butter.