With the little one
on the verge of now eating solid foods, I’m into resourceful cooking and prepping produce for several meals at once. Roasted or steamed vegetables turn into soup, sauce, and baby food. Beans and nuts are in a continuous soaking rotation. Time in the kitchen is swift as the milk and sweet potatoes fly off his spoon. On rare occasions (read “ideal nap days”), I find a moment to bake pie or to make seed butter from scratch.
The later comes together in a flash and it’s oh so good on toast or with apple slices. Plus there is chocolate involved. Enough said. I’m off for a snack and to play with Legos. Until next time.
Okay, some tips for making the sunflower seed butter: I use a Vitamix (you need the tamper) in this recipe. This also works in a food processor. Vitamix users need the tamper to push down the seeds and to turn them from a powdery meal into creamy seed butter in 2 to 3 minutes. Food processor users need to stop and scrape down the container occasionally. Either way, the key is to use toasted sunflower seeds. If you buy raw seeds in bulk, toast them in a dry skillet over medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon to prevent burning, until golden brown. Toasting the seeds helps to release the natural oils so the butter comes together without additional oil, though I like to add a bit for flavor and spread-ability. I like to store my seed butter in the refrigerator, which firms it up, since there isn’t dairy present, you could also store it in the pantry and give the butter a good stir before spreading.
Chocolate Sunflower Seed Butter
makes 1 full pint jar
3 cups unsalted sunflower seeds, toasted
1 1/4 cups dark chocolate chips
2 tablespoons vanilla cane sugar (place a few vanilla beans in the sugar jar and voila, in a week or two, you’ll have vanilla sugar)* or more to taste
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Place roasted sunflower seeds in a Vitamix container with lid on. Run machine at 1 and quickly move to 10 then switch to high (I have the Super 5200 model, newer ones are a bit different). Remove center plastic insert on the lid and insert tamper. Push down sunflower seeds while machine runs for 2 to 3 minutes, until the seeds turn creamy.
Heat the chocolate chips, vanilla sugar, coconut oil, salt, and cinnamon in a small saucepan over low heat while stirring constantly to ensure the chocolate doesn’t burn or seize up. When half the chips are melted, turn the heat off and continue stirring until chocolate melts completely. Pour the melted chocolate into the Vitamix container and blend until silky smooth. Transfer the chocolate sunflower seed butter to a pint jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator.
*If you don’t have vanilla sugar in the pantry, use 1/4 cup natural cane sugar plus 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract).