Ground Almonds are made from blanched almonds, because the brown skin of unblanched almonds is bitter.
Usually, the almonds are finely ground, but nothing says they technically couldn't be coarsely ground, more like a meal. When ground very finely, it is often referred to as "Almond Flour."
Ground Almonds can:
- be used as a thickener in sauces;
- be used as a topping on casseroles;
- be added in small amounts in "short dough" recipes, not so good in yeast-risen baked goods;
- be used to make "almond milk" from;
- give baked goods a moist, dense crumb, though will be slightly more fragile, so let baked goods rest a bit out of the oven before attempting to turn them out of their pans.
What Ground Almonds do not do is, surprisingly, add a lot of almond flavour.
Some cultures often use Ground Almonds in place of flour. For instance, Medieval Cooking used Ground Almonds as a flour, and Jews will use them at times when wheat is forbidden during certain religious holidays.
Though it is cheaper to make Ground Almonds than to buy them already ground, buying Ground Almonds is very convenient.
Sometimes, the almonds are toasted before being ground to develop more flavour, and to help prevent the almonds from clumping while being ground.
You can grind your own in a food processor or blender. Trying to grind untoasted ones, however, in a food processor you will likely just get almond butter. It's best to freeze the almonds first (toasted or untoasted) then process them straight from the freezer a few at a time.
Ground Almonds is not the same as "Chufas", which is sometimes referred to as "Ground Almonds." Also known as Tigernuts, they are a type of legume used as a nut which grows in the ground, as peanuts do.
1 cup ground Almonds = = 4 oz = 125 g ground Almonds
30 g ground Almonds = 1 oz = 1/4 cup ground Almonds
2 2/3 cups whole, shelled almonds = 1 pound ground Almonds
7/8 cup whole, shelled Almonds = 1 cup ground Almonds
4 oz / 125 g whole almonds, in shell = 1 cup ground almonds
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-- Richard Selzer (1928 - ). 'Confessions of a Knife.'