If you’ve been living under a rock for a couple of months now you might not know that Meridian now make three new speciality nut butters: pecan, macadamia, and brazil nut. And today I’m reviewing them for you.
Before we get into the review: the upshot. If you are a serious nut butter fan, or you are looking for a gift for a nut butter fan, then these are for you. However, if you aren’t wild on nut butter then stick with the deliciousness that is peanut or almond or cashew- the classics of Meridian. Personally, I love the macadamia butter, but almond butter still wins hands down for me. You just can’t beat it.
Also, a word of warning: pecan, macadamia, and brazil nuts naturally contain a lot of oil. This means that these nut butters are much runnier than the classic nut butters meridian make, due to their never adding stabilisers. That all being said, hard-core nutters read on…
The pecan butter, as with all of these butters, has a runny texture and separates easily. Each time you open it, you will have to give it a quick whipping up (unlike the peanut butter, which remains pretty stable once stirred). Despite the runny texture, this butter has some decent chunkage. If you’re into chunk-laden butters, and want to branch out from peanut, then this is a good one.
Okay, on to taste. The closest thing I can liken this to is toffee. It has such a caramelly, sweet flavour. As a result, it works really well in the bases of cheesecakes (see the picture below: I have a maple-pumpkin-pecan tarts recipe coming very soon), in bars, and also mixed into yoghurt.
Alternatively, even though it tastes sweet, this works well in savoury dishes. Mix it with lime and spices, and rub it into salmon as a marinade before baking; blitz it with raspberries and lime juice for a salad dressing.
Okay, this one separates at the drop of a hat. If you stir it up, turn around to grab a bowl, and come back to it- it has separated. You need to be quick to enjoy this one. This has the most chunkage as well, more so than the pecan butter.
The main flavour of this nut butter is a kind of toasted-nut taste. Almost bitter, but rich as well. If you don’t have much of a sweet tooth but like chunks, then go for this over the pecan butter.
This is possibly my least favourite of the butters, and so I’ve not tried it in as many recipes, but it does work well whipped into yoghurt with honey- creamy, toasted, and sweet. Tastes great, and even better if you fold in some frozen berries.
My favourite of the three, and probably the only one I will be repurchasing. This has the runniest texture of the three, and no chunks- it’s silky smooth. And it does separate easily. Which is mildly irritating, but I am willing to stir it each and every time- it tastes that good.
This is less sweet than the pecan butter, leaning more towards the middle of the sweet/savoury spectrum. This makes it versatile when it comes to cooking- you can use it in dressings, marinades, mixed into yoghurt with chia seeds and honey (to counter the runniness)- but I have to say: it works best as a white chocolate sub, drizzled over pancakes, or ice-cream (try my nicecream recipe with macadamia drizzle here: http://ecstaticallyem.blogspot.co.uk/2016/06/banana-berry-nicecream-macadamia-drizzle.html ).
Have you gotten your hands on these yet? If so, let me know what you think in the comments, and how you’ve been using them. Overall, though the novelty of these butters is fantastic, I would only repurchase the macadamia, and possibly the pecan- the latter primarily for use in baking, and the former for a slightly wider array of uses. They’re less versatile than the classics due to their texture, and so I can’t justify buying them all the time, as I simply wouldn’t get my money’s worth. They do come into their own in raw “baking” and bars though, and so if you’re a vegan looking to up your protein intake with some tasty raw desserts, you may be able to find a place for these in your baking collection…