I was an undeniably latecomer to the world of cooking.
In fact, people are often shocked when I tell them that during my exchange semester in Germany, I survived solely on rice with some variant of vegetables in oyster sauce, or some combination of pasta and store-bought sauce (I simply didn’t know how to cook).
The other day, my best friend Jin and I laughed over how she used to send me links to her favorite food blogs when we were still at University, and how I had no interest in baking nor cooking, nor did I understand the logic behind food blogs.
But hey, look how life surprises us!
About three years ago, in early 2012, I hesitantly signed up for a cooking class just two blocks away from my apartment, and somewhere between then and now.. I got seriously hooked on cooking.
I now write a food blog (crazy, huh?).
And… I also love baking so much that I’m launching a cookbook on grain-free baked goods next week (who would have thought??).
Yet the thing that probably surprises me the most is the fact I’m now cooking mostly grain-free.
As I told you in my previous post, my mum is the main reason why I started posting so many more grain-free recipes.
After a scary heart-attack episode and a Type-2 diabetes diagnosis from my mum’s doctor, I was shocked into action, and decided that I was going to help my dear mum find her path back to health.
And I would do that through posting grain-free recipes that she would be able to cook without fear of causing unhealthy spikes in her blood sugar levels.
As I began started testing and experimenting with different grain-free recipes, I found myself mostly using almond flour compared to other grain-free flours.
Mostly, I like almond flour because it does not have an overpowering taste or smell, and can be used as a base for most grain-free recipes without distorting the taste.
Where I live in Buenos Aires though, almond flour is not readily available (currently, I’ve only seen it in Barrio Chino, Chinatown) and it’s also quite expensive.
It’s quite a hassle to have to go all the way to Barrio Chino to buy almond flour everytime I want to test a grain-free recipe, but raw almonds, on the other hand, can be easily found in almost all natural food stores and supermarkets.
So here’s my quick-and-easy go-to solution whenever I’ve run out of almond flour.
I make my own homemade almond meal, a cheaper and quicker alternative to store-bought almond flour.
There are very slight differences between almond flour and almond meal – almond meal is slightly coarser and is also a dark shade of brown – but these are minimal differences and almond meal can be used as a substitute for almond flour in a 1:1 ratio.
Here’s how to make your own almond meal: all you need is raw almonds, 5 minutes, a food processor or blender, and a fine-mesh sieve.
Begin by processing the almonds in your food processor or blender, until you get a fine almond meal – this should take about a minute. Sift the almond meal through a fine-mesh sieve, and collect the bits that are too large to be sifted. Return the large almond bits to the food processor or blender once again, and process until all the almond meal is fine enough to pass through the sieve.
There you have it: homemade almond meal in just five minutes.
P.S. Check out for my new e-cookbook, which includes 30 grain-free breads & treats. You’ll be able to make use of your homemade almond meal very often!
- 1¼ cup raw almonds
- Place the raw almonds in the bowl of a blender or food processor.
- Process almonds until you get a fine almond meal (about 1 minute).
- Sift the almond meal through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl and re-process the bits that are too large to pass through the sieve.
- Repeat until you have no more (or very little) large bits left.