Old Fashioned Nut Butter Biscuits | Nutural World

It’s funny what can upset you, isn’t it? Funny odd not funny ha ha.

The attachments we form to inanimate – and frankly insignificant – objects can verge on the ridiculous.

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Like many kids, my sister and I helped mum in the kitchen and developed a love of food and cooking from an early age. Mostly, we cooked from mum’s collection of cookery books but when I was 12, my interest was re-galvanised by cookery lessons at school and I decided I wanted to learn more about baking. I bought my very first cookery book, one of the Marks & Spencer’s St Michael series; Good Home Baking by Mary Cadogan was newly published in 1983 and I loved cooking from it. I have strong and quite distinct memories of making the individually shaped Vienna bread rolls and some of the biscuit recipes many times, as I strove to improve my skills.

Fast forward a few years and I left for university, but failed to take the book with me. When I next came home and tried to find it I discovered, to my enormous upset, that mum had given it away! Had it been any of the other books we cooked from, it wouldn’t have been a big deal but this was my book, my first cookery book and I wanted it back! It was one I had learned and loved cooking from and I felt its loss far more keenly than my rather chagrined mum had anticipated. Of course, she offered to buy me another copy but it was no longer readily available and eventually I stopped sulking and let it go.

But actually, several times in the years since then, I’ve found myself thinking about that one cookery book and wistfully wishing I still had it. It’s not that I feel I need those recipes to make bread rolls or biscuits. Maybe it’s just nostalgia? For years, I’ve browsed charity shop shelves in the hope of spotting it. Others in the St Michael series have popped up now and then and I’ve bought all kinds of other fabulous finds. But I never spotted my book.

Of course, there’s one thing we have at our fingertips now that we didn’t have back when mum gave my precious book away: the internet! A couple of weeks ago, I suddenly decided to try and track down the book on the web. To my delight, it took all of ten minutes to find several second-hand copies on sale via Amazon Marketplace and a few days later my “used very good” copy arrived.

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As soon as I started flicking through the pages, I recognised many of the photographs.

But what to make first? Should it be Coffee Kisses or Glazed Nut Loaf or Tea Brack or Sticky Gingerbread, all of which I remember making?

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In the end, the decision was easy. I cast my eye over the box of product samples waiting to be reviewed and settled quickly on a selection of Nutural World Nut Butters. Made by the delightfully named Mordechai Chachamu (I genuinely think his might be the single most charming name I’ve ever encountered), these nut and seed butters are 100% natural with just one ingredient each. Mordechai gently roasts the nuts and seeds to bring out their flavour, then processes them to smooth or crunchy. The regular jars hold 170 grams and range in price from just £1.98 for the Sunflower Butter to £5.60 for the Macadamia Nut Butter. Also in the range are Cashew Nut, Pumpkin Seed, Hazelnut, Brazil Nut, White and Brown Almond, Pecan and Pistachio.

You can buy these from the Nutural World website, at Broadway and Camden markets and on eBay and I urge you to give them a try. They’re absolutely delicious and a wonderful alternative to their better known cousin, peanut butter.

Which is why I chose a classic peanut butter recipe from Good Home Baking to put some of Nutural World’s nut butters to the test – Peanut Biscuits.

Because I wanted to try three different variations, we first mixed up the biscuit dough without any nut butter, divided it into three and then added a different nut butter to each portion. Of course, you can make a single batch and add whichever nut butter you choose to your mix.

As we’re not fans of margarine, we also switched margarine to butter and we adapted the method to use our food processor. Of course, you can mix by hand.

These biscuits are what I’d call old fashioned in style – they’re crunchy and crumbly rather than soft and chewy and the flavours are subtle rather than smack-in-the-face. They’re perfect with a big mug of tea.

Old Fashioned Nut Butter Biscuits

Adapted from Mary Cadogan’s Peanut Biscuits
Makes about 24 biscuits

Ingredients
275 grams plain flour
0.5 teaspoon baking powder
0.5 teaspoon salt
0.5 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
100 grams butter
225 grams soft light brown sugar
100 grams crunchy nut butter of your choice
2 eggs

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 180 °C (fan).
  • Process flour, baking powder, salt, bicarbonate of soda and butter in a food processor until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  • Add the sugar and eggs. If using a single nut butter, add this in too.
  • Process until the mixture comes together as soft sticky dough, with the ingredients thoroughly combined.

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Our dough divided into three portions; adding Nutural World Macadamia Nut, Cashew and Brazil Nut butters

  • If making a variety of nut butter biscuits, scrape the dough out of the processor, divide into portions, add nut butter and beat in thoroughly using a fork or spoon.

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  • On a baking tray lined with either a silicon mat or baking paper, spoon out dollops of biscuit dough and use a fork to pat each dollop down and create criss-cross lines on the surface.
  • Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown.

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  • Leave to cool on the baking tray for a couple of minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

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Kavey Eats received nut butter samples from Nutural World.

Please leave a comment - I love hearing from you!
18 Comments to "Old Fashioned Nut Butter Biscuits | Nutural World"

  1. Dominic

    What a delightful blog post Kavey. I mourn for your loss but celebrate the return of that precious book. I’m kind of like that with my Delia Smith Complete Cokkery Course. Gorgeous cookies. They look perfect.

    Reply
  2. Jane Willis

    I’m just the same with my emotional attachment to cook books. The one you lose in a house move, the one you lend to somebody and never get back – they are such a source of grief. And then the magic moment when you spot a copy on ebay or better still just chance on it in a charity shop!

    Reply
  3. Shereen

    Those look like the perfect biscuit for a cuppa.

    I have a range of nut butters from a Northern Irish company called Keen Nut and they sound very similar to Nutural. Ingredient in their almond butter is: almonds. And you’re right, it’s a whole world away from commercial peanut butter. I’ve bookmarked this recipe and will be trying it, ta.

    Reply
    kaveyeats

    They sound great too. Yes no ingredients other than the nuts (or seeds, for those butters).

    Reply
  4. Judith

    OMG I totally understand what you mean about your first cookery book. I rescued one of my childhood favs from the recycling box not long ago. Thanks for sharing the amazing recipe too – I love nut-based cookies 😀 I have such fond memories of peanut butter cookies from my childhood 😀

    Reply
    kaveyeats

    Judith, I have lots of more strongly nutty peanut butter cookie recipes bookmarked too but really wanted to start with this old fashioned nostalgic one!

    Reply
  5. Sally - My Custard Pie

    I’m so glad you found your book Kavey. I remember the first one I bought so well. It was from Habitat and I lugged it home on the bus with a chicken brick (my arms nearly dropped off it was so heavy). It taught me so much about ingredients I had never even heard of and I have it still. The first one I browsed was my Mum’s Good Housekeeping book which she was given as a present from work when she left to get married (as you did in those days). I was astonished to find that she had replaced it with one in better condition that she found in a second hand shop recently. I would dearly like to find the old battered one I poured over as a child.

    Reply
    kaveyeats

    I sometimes wonder if our nostalgia for old treasured worn things has skipped our mothers’ generation completely!

    Reply
  6. Jen @ Blue Kitchen Bakes

    Thank goodness for Amazon! So glad you managed to track down a copy so you could make these lovely little biscuits. Those nut butters sound fabulous, I bet the pecan butter would make a lovely biscuit to enjoy with a cuppa.

    Reply
  7. Rosie Kelly

    Finding a much-treasured but long-lost book on ebay or Amazon marketplace is one of the things I love most about the internet. There are several obscure American picture books I was given as a child by relatives that I’ve managed to find copies of for the kids in my life, which would have been completely impossible 20 years ago!

    Reply
  8. Choclette

    Wow, I’ve never seen such an array of nut butters before, what an absolutely wonderful batch of samples to be sent. The biscuits sound like the sort I really want to scoff.

    Reply

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