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Make Yourself Some Sunflower Butter
Peanut butter, that favorite of American kids for the last 50 years, may soon have a new competitor. It's sunflower butter or sunbutter.
Commercial companies are still developing and testing the product. But, if you want to get a head start on them, you can make your own sunbutter. Here's the process, as described by Rhoda Falk, home economist at North Dakota State University:
1. Buy unroasted, unsalted sunflower kernels. Two cups of kernels will make about 1 cup of sunbutter.
2. Spread the seeds on a cookie sheet and place them in the oven at 300? F. for 30-40 min. They should be light brown after roasting.
3. Grind the roasted seeds in a food processor for 10 min. First, the seeds will be a fine powder that becomes a butter as the oils blend in. Scrape the sides down as the mixture thickens. (A blender will not do the job as well, but may work if necessary.)
4. Season with up to 1 1/2 tsp. salt and 3 tablespoons of sugar per lb. of butter. You may wish to substitute corn syrup for sugar.
5. Cool and store in a jar in the refrigerator. The oils may become rancid at room temperatures.
Falk doesn't advise using salted kernels. She suggests making only a half pound at a time, and cautions against using a blender because you might burn out the motor.
Sunbutter can be used as a spread just like peanut butter, and it can be substituted in most recipes for peanut butter. Falk warns, however, that some foods turn olive green when sunbutter is substituted for peanut butter. This can be corrected, she says, by adding one or two tsp. of lemon juice to a recipe using sunbutter.
For more information about recipes being tested, nutritional value of sunbutter, and other related questions, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Rhoda Falk, College of Home Economics, Food & Nutrition Dept., North Dakota State University, Fargo, No. Dak. 58105 (ph 701 237-7487).

Sunbutter cookies
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup sunbutter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup firmly-packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)
Makes 3 dozen.

Combine shortening, margarine or butter, sunbutter, sugars and egg. Mix thoroughly. Blend together dry ingredients. Stir into sunbutter mixture. Chill one hour. Roll chilled dough into walnut-sized balls. Place on lightly-greased baking sheet and flatten with fork. Bake in 375? F oven for 10 to 12 minutes.

Sunbutter bars
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 cup sunbutter
3 cups corn flakes
1 6-oz. pkg. chocolate chips
1 6-oz. pkg. butterscotch chips Makes 31/2 dozen bars.

Combine sugar, syrup and sunbutter; heat in a double boiler until melted. Add corn flakes and spread in a buttered pan. Melt chips in double boiler. Spread on top of bars and cool thoroughly.

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1981 - Volume #5, Issue #4