Showing posts with label peanut butter. Show all posts
Showing posts with label peanut butter. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Midweek Marvels - PB2 Dry Peanut Butter

I had never before heard of powdered dehydrated peanut butter until I saw it on the shelf this week. And even now it has intrigued me to the point of confusion.

I've been having a really hard time understanding the idea behind the creation of this product. The label boasts that through this dehydration process that they have removed the bulk of the oil and fat from the peanut butter so that you may enjoy it in peace and light calories. But that just leaves me thinking, well... without the healthy fats, protein and creaminess that comes with a nut butter, what the hell is the point? I tried my best, though to reserve judgment. I mean, it could still be delicious, right? Peanut butter in new and unfamiliar form? At the store I saw two kinds, one traditional, no frills, dehydrated peanut dust, and another, chocolate flavored. I went for the chocolate to maximize the potential for success.

Once I purchased, bagged, and brought this strange item home, I read the directions on the back; "1 tbsp water for 2 tbsp peanut butter dust.". I tried it out, just as they said, 2:1 ratio, and found it still runny. So I abandoned the directions and attacked it by eye, Ovaltine style. Don't stop adding dust until it's thick enough to cut with a knife! About three to four more tablespoons later, I was satisfied with the thickness, and was ready for a taste. With quivering spoon I brought the strange paste to my lips, and tasted.

It was...uneventful. I thought, being dehydrated and ground, that it would have a highly intensified peanut flavor! But all I found was just the faintest hint of vague "roast". I didn't really get a peanut taste that satisfied any part of my creamy desires, and I didn't detect a chocolate flavor at all! It just sat there, in all it's disappointing blandness, slowly turning blacker, strangely oxidizing in the open air.

So...what's one to do with a 6 ounce container of dehydrated peanut dust?! I guess a trip to pinterest in in order....

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Midweek Marvels - Peanut Butter Jam Session

So I realize that this is probably cheating but... I found a new Ben and Jerry's flavor that I just have to share with you. It's called Peanut Butter Jam Session, and it's a deceivingly simple combination of flavors in a simply gorgeous way. Peanut Butter Jam Session combines Ben and Jerry's already wonderful peanut butter ice cream with swirls of crunchy peanut butter and an intensely flavored raspberry jam. This combination ordinarily wouldn't spark my interest, (What's so exciting about peanut butter and jam, right?) but it's executed in such an elegant way that the flavors hum together with the harmony of an old standard.
It's hard to pin down exactly what it is about this flavor that makes it such a hit,( is it the just right level of tart-sweet from the raspberry jam? Is it the perfect bite of salty crunch from the chunky peanut butter? Is it the possibility of secretly added narcotics?) but something in the combination is sooo satisfying.

I was really surprised by how much I loved this flavor, I typically rate fruity desserts lower just based on personal preference, but here... I'll even be so bold as to add it to my top 10 favorites. (What? Wut?!) I may be 77 flavors in, but I'm happy to find that every once and a while Ben and Jerry's can still produce a flavor that will dazzle and delight even the oldest of fans. Give it a try!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

"Peanut Butter Fudge Chocolate Chip Pie" or "How To Ace Your Nutrition Midterm"

I'm pretty sure that before this week I never truly understood the terms "spring break" or "midterm exam". I'd heard them thrown around a lot before but until I started college, the meaning was completely lost on me. Last week was madness, I thought about nothing but the human digestive system, glucose, fructose, galactose, tryglycerides, amino acids and omega 3s. I started calling my boyfriend a monosaccharide to get on his nerves if he tried to talk to me while I was studying (as a joke) but struggled to remember to call him by his proper name when I wasn't studying. Things got ridiculous, so ridiculous in fact that I have no idea how in the midst of all that nutrition cramming I managed to come up with this chocolate explosion of a recipe.

My boyfriend's birthday happened to fall on the day after my last midterm exam. I asked him what he would like to eat since he's an freak and a cake hater, and he asked for chocolate cream pie (again) which was kind of a problem because of my dairy restriction but I had other things to worry about (my test!) so I put solving that problem on the back burner. Like way in the back burner since I didn't really bother to think about it until it came down to the wire.

When the day actually came for me to produce this dessert I started to worry when a quick search determined that my best bet was some melted chocolate swirled around with some silken tofu. Um, tofu? Really? How was I going to get my boyfriend to eat that? It didn't even sound like something I could trick myself into eating. But it was my only hope, so I would trust the vegans and lie to my boyfriend.

My mind raced trying to think up ways I could stealthily pull this off.

I would go shopping while he was asleep of course, and hide the tofu away in the fridge,and sneak the empty containers out to the dumpster so he'd never know they were involved. Then, I'd change the pie around a bit, maybe some smores action. A little graham cracker crust, maybe some marshmallows on top. Yeah, yeah this was sounding good.

So I  waited until he was asleep,ran out to the store, gathered my disguises and headed back to the apartment to get stared on my evil scheme. Things were going well until I realized that the graham crackers I'd bought for the crumb crust were expired. Like way expired. You can smell how rancid they are when you open the package kind of expired.

I was... upset.
I had about a sliver of a window before he woke up where I could deal with this whole tofu madness and I did not have time to go running back to the store.

My overstimulated textbook brain spiraled into  a problem solving mode fueled by stress, nutrition facts and rage.

 I may have blacked out.

I have memories of growing three times my size, breaking free of my t-shirt and jeans, and ransacking my kitchen pantry in a fit of amazonian fury. But I can't be sure what truly went down.

All I know for sure is that when I came back to my senses these little miniature peanut butter fudge chocolate chip pies were daintily chilling in my fridge and I may or may not have been laying on the kitchen floor in my alltogether atop a pile of rags that used to be my clothing.

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The pies, however it was that they came to be, were a hit. Tofu or no there is so much going on that even the most stuck up of boyfriends would never be the wiser. Chocolate and peanut butter atop a crispy chocolate chip cookie crust, who's going to argue? The pies disappeared about as quickly and mysteriously as they came into being. 

Happy Birthday Alan, I totally meant to do that. I think.

Peanut Butter Fudge Chocolate Chip Pie (dairy free, egg free,gluten free)

For the Chocolate Chip Cookie crust

1 cup Earth Balance dairy free butter
1/3 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground golden flaxseed + 3 tbsp boiling water left to sit for 10 minutes)
1 cup All purpose gluten free flour mix* (learn how to make your own here)
1 1/8 cup sweet white rice flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt ( omit if using salted dairy free butter)
1/2 cup dairy free chocolate chips (I used Enjoy Life Semi Sweet chocolate chips)

1. In a large mixing bowl cream together butter, sugars, vanilla and the flax egg until well combined and fluffy.

2. in a separate bowl sift together the flours, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients into the wet and stir until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

3. Divide the dough into four equal portions, and press into the bottoms of four 5" ramekins, making sure to work the dough up the sides to form an even crust. Poke all over with the prongs of a fork (so it doesn't puff up in the oven). Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and bake for 12-14 minutes ( until it's the level of crispiness you like, or don't bake it at all  since there's no egg and leave it cookie dough if you like!). Let cool for at least 20 minutes before adding the filling.

* for my GF AP flour mix I used sorghum+teff+brown rice for my grains and tapioca+potato+sweet white rice for my starches

For the filling

13 ounces semisweet chocolate chips ( I used Enjoy Life semi-sweet chocolate chips)
1/3 cup coffee liqueur ( I used 1/4 cup homemade vanilla extract and 3 tbsp freshly brewed coffee)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 pound silken tofu, drained
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tablespoon honey (or more to taste)

1.In a double boiler, or a large microwave safe bowl add the chocolate pieces and the coffee liqueur and melt until creamy and smooth.

2. Add melted chocolate, vanilla extract, silken tofu, peanut butter and honey to the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth. Divided into the four prepared pie crusts and let chill in the fridge for at least an hour (or more) before serving.