Before you read any further, I must ask that you pay no attention to the background of the photos. The blurred, artistically cropped things of food surrounding the sun butter are not important right now. What is important is that little glob of sunshine smeared on the still-warm dish. The littlest things in life, at least for me this week, are the most significant.
Thus, sun butter.
Thus, sun butter.
Sun butter is that holy grail of spread that took me so long to find and create to my liking. I didn’t want sun butter (or sunflower seed butter, but I like its abbreviation better) that had additional oils or sweeteners, and I didn’t particularly care if it wasn’t raw. I wanted something that stuck to the roof of my mouth just like any nut butter and taste what it really was: sunflower seeds.
There are a lot of great recipes out there for sun butter, though I find in my search through cyber space a twisted hope that I don’t find it. If you go on an adventure to find something and come back empty-handed, that is where your creativity, ambition, and strength to make do come out to the light. So what if you don’t get exactly what you wanted? Sometimes getting what you want is the last thing you need. Sometimes you do get what you want and realize it wasn’t what you were hoping for. Sometimes it just takes a little more effort to get there, perhaps with more twists and turns along the way.
Sun butter has become the focus of my philosophical “aha!” moment this morning. Here is this dollop of brown gloop just sitting there at the center of whatever I happen to put it on, and I get lost in its significance.
I’m learning to break things down into manageable blocs of focus throughout the day. There’s time reserved for meditation, for studying, for classes, and for my part-time job. There’s time reserved for blogging, for eating, for exercising, and other things. From my week enjoying a spoonful of the sunny stuff I learned to not stress over being perfect the first time around (case in point, the delicious “flop” food the sun butter is so delicately placed on), and to not micro-manage everything. Just because I’m managing my time is no reason to become too time oriented and rigid. There’s stuff going on between the studying and the classes, the blogging and the meditating, little stuff that cements those blocs into the collective whole that is my life in a day. Life happens and there will be bumps and bruises and tears amidst the smiles and smooth sailing. That’s just a small part, the majority of which being rather amazing and awe-inspiring.
In conclusion, my dear readers, the little dollops of sun butter are just the minute experiences that make the whole dish of life that much better. So go ahead and take a spoonful. Just remember that there are other meals to taste along the road.
A Little Bit of Sunshine Roasted Sun Butter
330 g Raw sunflower seeds
1/2 tsp. Sea salt
Preheat the oven to 300ºF.
Spread the sunflower seeds flatly on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Roast for 30 - 35 minutes*, until golden brown and aromatic, stirring 1 to 2 times.
Remove and add to your food processor, scraping down the sides as necessary.
Process for 10 - 12 minutes, continuing to scrape as needed.**
Once it is smooth, add the sea salt and process for another minute or so until it is at the desired consistency.
Makes 10 servings.
* Sunflower seeds take a little longer to brown, but I assure you the “roasted” taste in the sun butter is worth it.
** Okay, sun butter takes quite a while to become, well, sun butter. For a time it will seem like all it’s becoming a sunflower seed flower, but then it will ball up and have the consistency of sticky dough. The ball will twirl around the processor and then it will flatten out and finally liquefy. (But is it worth it, Morri? you ask. Yes, yes it is.)