Almond Butter - Well, Not Quite
Sometimes I get so excited about discovering a new ingredient that I forget to read the fine print before ordering. My recent purchase of almond butter is such an example.
It's Organic! Go For it!In my quest for exciting and exotic butters to find the 'perfect butter for lotion bars' test, I was overjoyed to discover a butter I'd never seen before. The supplier had placed it right on the front page of the butters section with a splashy little 'new item' icon next to the name – almond butter.
Even better - it was organic almond butter.
Perfect! The oil in the test lotion bars is almond oil. "Pairing almond butter with almond oil will probably make for a deliciously smooth, marzipan-scented lotion bar", I thought as I added it to my order without a thought of checking the product description in detail.
This really isn't my usual behavior when ordering ingredients, but I was excited about 'my discovery'.
The ArrivalWhen the order arrived, it turned out the almond butter consisted of shea butter with almond oil added.
This just wasn't what I was expecting.
And they mixed it into shea. Really, shea?
Sigh?Now, I love shea butter to pieces and use it in several products. But in my experience, it's really a bucket of worms to work with. Graininess is a constant battle (an upcoming post on this soon).
And let's face it, no one on the planet wants graininess in their lovely cream or whipped butter, do they?
Grains are so.. so.. grainy.
But Maybe This Will Be DifferentI opened the container.
Visible graininess all over the place.
(Insert rolling eyes and theatrically loud sigh of adolescent-style disappointment here).
What did I find when I (finally) checked the information sheet?
"This almond butter can sometimes be grainy due to natural crystallisation. To remove the graininess, melt the butter completely in a water bath, then cool rapidly."
Sometimes be grainy? This jar was through and through 'sometimes'.
To make matters worse, the butter was really, really soft.
"OK, it's here now, so let's just run with it. We'll use it in a lotion bar" said the no-nonsense part of me to the part that was still busy acting like a spoiled child.
In the LabBecause the texture of the butter was so soft, a harder butter had to be added to the mix if there was to be any hope of creating a lotion bar that didn't turn into lotion mush at room temperature. Cocoa butter was introduced to the formula. The proportions are evident in the pic above. The almond butter is practically nonexistent in this lotion bar. Therefore, it hasn't been included in the butter comparison test.
I'll be trying to find a different use for this butter in the near future.
Or maybe not.