Almond meal or almond flour is simply pure, raw, blanched almonds finely ground. We hear more about almond flour lately because it is gluten-free, in addition to kosher and low-carb. It is very flavorful with a nutty taste and gives a rich, moist texture to baked goods. It is probably most famous for being required in the famed Viennese pastry, Sachertorte, in league with its companion ingredients, marzipan and almond paste. It is also distinctive for its presence in authentic macaroons.
Almonds go back to Central Asia and China and the year 1400 BCE with biblical references and a favorite of Egyptian pharaohs. Gradually, almond trees found their way via the Silk Road to a presence in the Mediterranean region. Later, they were seen as good luck gifts.
Almonds and almond flour are rich in calcium, iron, vitamin E and fiber, yet high in protein, low in carbs and sugar. They are associated with lower cholesterol and reduced heart health issues due to their monounsaturated fat content.
Almond flour is available in most health food stores. If you intend to store almond flour for any period of time, it is best stored in an air-tight bag in your freezer.
USES FOR ALMOND FLOUR:
Excellent in almost all baked goods, requires no sifting or kneading
Makes a flavorful breading for meat and seafood
Waffles and pancakes
Matzos balls and kugel