Almond Meal and What to Do With It

When I posted the recipe for almond milk, I said to make sure not to throw away the almond meal. In this post, I am going to tell you what to do with it.

What to Do With WET Almond Meal

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When you’re done making almond milk, you will be left with about 1 and 1/2 cups of moist almond meal. There are many uses for this meal. You can store it for several days in the refrigerator and use it as a mix-in for smoothies. It will add fiber but not a lot of almond taste so it can go into just about any type of smoothie. A little goes a long way though.

You can also mix it into pancake or muffin batter to add some fiber and texture.

If none of these uses appeals right away, then you can also dry out the almond meal so that it can store longer. There are a variety of uses for dry almond meal.

What to Do With DRY Almond Meal

The process to dry out the almond meal is simple. Spread it out in a thin layer on a baking sheet (I lined mine with parchment but you don’t have to) and place in an oven at its lowest temperature – usually this is between 150 to 180 degrees. Leave the oven door slightly ajar to allow moisture to escape.

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Leave the almond meal in the oven for 2 – 3 hours. Go for a run or something. When time is up, remove from oven. You now have almond meal that can be used as a crunchy, nutty coating to oven fry fish or chicken, in place of bread crumbs.

You can also make it into almond flour.

How to make almond flour

To make the dried almond meal into almond flour, simply place in a food processor using the chopping blades attachment, and process until the meal achieves a fine floury consistency. A minute or two should do it.

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Place the processed almond flour into a glass jar and cover tightly to store.

Almond flour can be used in baking either mixed in with your usual flour, or on its own in certain recipes. A well-known use for it is in French macarons, which are made primarily from egg whites, sugar and almond flour. And buttercream filling. That’s sounding pretty good right now so you can probably look forward to seeing them in a future recipe!

Have you ever made almond flour? How do you use it?

Mini Brownie Egg Nests

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I am all about last minute Easter preparations around here, mostly because Easter always seems to sneak up on me. We haven’t dyed eggs yet, nor have we even found the Easter baskets. Time is running out. But I loved this idea so much and it seemed simple enough, so I decided why not? If nothing else at least I managed to do this – Easter will not pass without at least something to commemorate it as special.

Besides, I don’t know about you but my kids and I would rather eat a brownie with a candy covered chocolate egg on top, than a real egg, any day of the week.

You can do this recipe from a box mix, or you can do it from scratch. Scratch takes just a few extra minutes and gives you more control over what goes in. I went with the scratch option.

Mini Brownie Egg Nests

Wet ingredients
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
4 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 eggs, beaten well
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Dry ingredients
3/4 cup whole wheat flour (because of course these are healthy brownies)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Topping
Sweetened shredded coconut
Nutella
Whoppers Robin eggs, Cadbury mini eggs, or jelly beans. We went with the Robin eggs, which can only fit one in the nests, but are still cute.

Instructions:
Gather your ingredients. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

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Melt the butter in the microwave – 40 seconds to 1 minute on full power.

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Stir in the cocoa powder, eggs, sugar and vanilla, mix until smooth.

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Combine dry ingredients in a bowl.

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Stir dry ingredients into the sugar and butter mixture. Mix well until all ingredients are smooth and without lumps.

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Measure by teaspoonfuls into a mini muffin pan. Each tin should be no more than 2/3 full (the nests are hard to get out if they puff up above the edge of the pan).

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Place in hot oven for 5 minutes. Remove and sprinkle a small amount of sweetened coconut on top of each brownie.

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Return pan to the oven for 10 minutes. The coconut will brown and will mimic the sticks in a natural bird nest.

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Remove from oven, and while brownies are still warm make an indentation in top for your eggs to sit in.

Allow the brownie nests to cool before removing from pan – this is the Pinterest Fail portion of the recipe if you rush it.

Remove cooled brownies to a plate or cooling rack. Place a small dab of Nutella on the underside of your “eggs” and arrange them Nutella side down on top of the nests. The Nutella holds the eggs in place.

Plus, Nutella just makes everything better.

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And voila – Mini Brownie Egg Nests!

Happy Easter!