Hello! Firstly, I’ve been hearing a lot lately about the FTC (Federal Trade Commission, for those of you who give a shit) tightening guidelines related to humble (and usually piss poor, I might add) bloggers and what they call “sponsored content.” I hardly think that reviewing a cookbook or product that I think is freaking amazing – with zero fiscal remuneration – is being “sponsored” (air quotes), but to protect myself and, most importantly, Banjo (she’s had some scuffles with the law in the past), I gotta preface this otherwise rad post by denoting that it is SPONSORED.
Nut Butter Universe by Robin Robertson
Okay, now that we got that outta the way, let’s talk about nuts. This is probably my pal, Claire’s (from Eat Well. Party Hard) happy place book because she’s in China and she ain’t got no peanut butter (or machine to make any), so I’m sending her some. Let me just start by saying that if you’re the kind of person who can be found with a spoon in the jar of peanut butter at 3am, hair a mess and an expression of bliss on your face, (1) you’re my kind of people and (2) this book is going to be your new bedside companion.
Robin Robertson has done it again with Nut Butter Universe (Vegan Heritage Press, 2013). She’s prolific (like the Danielle Steele of the veg cookbook realm) in the kitch and on the page, and this book, with its delightfully colorful and gummy-feeling cover (seriously, I can stop touching it. Am I weird?) is one of my favorites. For one, the recipes are easy-to-follow with mostly simple, whole ingredients that one can acquire pretty much anywhere. This is good because I plan on giving this to people for the holidays and I really don’t want to field calls about black salt and Ultratex and stuff like that.
Secondly, the recipes are patently delish. Like, you really can’t go wrong here. Why? Because unless you have an allergy, everyone loves stuff enrobed in creamy nut butters. Duh. Plus, Robertson lays out the basics, so you can start by making your own tahini and cashew mayo to incorporate in to more elaborate dishes later.
Here are the recipes I made and really, really enjoyed:
- Nutty Parmesan
- Raw Sesame Butter (Tahini)
- African Peanut Soup
- Smoke and Spice (my two favorite things in food) Almond Hummus
- Cashew Goddess Dressing (#totesamaze)
- Almond Mashed Potato Cakes
- Nutty Buddy Burgers (these were a PROBLEM for me)
- Peanut Butter Cups (drool over the photographic evidence below)
Oh, and these. Which Robin and VHP have kindly allowed me to share with you beautiful people.
Spicy Walnut Green Beans
If you don’t want the heat of the red pepper flakes, there’s no need to pass on this dish – it’s very flavorful without them. Mirin is a sweet Japanese cooking wine made from rice. It is available in supermarkets, Asian markets, and natural food stores. To make this soy-free, use coconut aminos instead of tamari.
Yields 4 servings
- 1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed
- 2 tablespoons walnut butter
- 2 tablespoons wheat-free tamari
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon mirin or water
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon neutral vegetable oil
- 1 large clove garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
- Steam the green beans just until tender, about 5 minutes. Rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the walnut butter, tamari, sesame oil, mirin, and sugar and set aside.
- Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the reserved beans in batches and stir-fry for 30 seconds, transferring the cooked beans to a platter.
- When all the beans have been removed, add the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes to the same pan and stir-fry for 10 seconds.
- Return the beans to the pan and stir-fry for 30 seconds.
- Add the reserved walnut butter mixture and stir-fry until the beans are hot and coated with the sauce, about 30 seconds.
From Nut Butter Universe by Robin Robertson. ©2013 Robin Robertson. Used by permission from Vegan Heritage Press. Photo by Lori Maffei.
Nut Butter Universe Giveaway
You know I don’t play on here. If I’m gonna review something, I’m also gonna give it away to one of you. This SPONSORED post is no different. Enter to win here. US residents only, please.