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5 Nov 2008

Peanut Butter Lovers Month


Who knew that November is Peanut Butter Lovers Month? This is to honor George A. Bayle, a St. Louis physician, who in 1890 began processing peanuts into a nutritious paste for people with dental problems. Peanuts had been made into paste for thousands of years previously by the Incas but it took until the end of the 19th Century for it to be commercially processed and patented in the US.

Peanuts are not true nuts but legumes. Although high in calories/kilojoules, organic, pure peanut butter, made from raw or roasted peanuts, makes up for it by being highly nutritious. It contains good amounts of manganese, tryptophan, niacin, folate, fiber, silicon and copper with many other smaller amounts of vitamins, minerals and amino acids. Rich in complete protein (peanuts have more protein than any other legume or nut), high in the good monounsaturated and polyunsaturated oils and low in cholesterol and sodium. Check label to see that there is no added salt, sugar, trans-fats or preservatives.

Health wise peanut butter is excellent. An aid to a healthy circulation and nervous system, metabolism of protein and carbohydrates, formation of red blood cells, and preventing premature aging. Plus it contains a natural antimicrobial agent Resveratrol, a wonder nutrient, helps with protection against fungi, bacteria and viral infections. Recent studies also show that eating peanut butter a couple of times a week prevents developing gall stones by up to 25% and eating niacin-rich foods like peanut butter also provides protection against Alzheimer's disease and age-related cognitive decline.

Due to it's high fat content it is important to store peanut butter correctly as it can easily go rancid. With natural, organic, peanut butter only purchase or make what you intend to eat within a week or two and once opened always store in the fridge.

Warnings: Approx 2% of the population are allergic to peanuts and peanut butter, therefore be cautious when eating them for the first time as you would with all allergen foods. Peanuts also contain oxalates so individuals with existing and untreated kidney or gallbladder problems may want to avoid eating peanuts or peanut butter.


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Man cannot live by bread alone; he must have peanut butter.
James A. Garfield (American President 1831-1881)
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Peanut Butter Tip: Before you pour into a measuring cup, fill cup with hot water. Empty cup but do not dry. Add peanut butter and watch how easily it drops out.


How To Oven Roast Peanuts
From HomeCooking at About.com
Try your hand at oven-roasting fresh raw peanuts at home. It's quick, easy and you just can't beat the flavor. Preheat oven to 350F/175C. Place raw peanuts in a single layer in shallow baking pan. For unshelled peanuts: Bake 20 to 25 minutes. For shelled peanuts: Bake 15 to 20 minutes. Stir once or twice during cooking time. Cook until slightly underdone. Peanuts continue to cook when removed from oven. Let cool 10 minutes before eating. Store unshelled roasted peanuts in an airtight container up to one month on the shelf, 6 months in refrigerator or 12 months in freezer.


Homemade Peanut Butter

1 cup raw or roasted peanuts
1 to 2 tbsps cold pressed peanut, coconut or extra virgin olive oil

Mix in food processor/blender until smooth (I make mine in my coffee grinder in two batches ~ Jackie). Eat or refrigerate or it will go moldy.


African Spicy Peanut Stew
From the Vegetarian Times
“The basis of all African meals is a soupy stew served with a starch,” explains Jessica B. Harris, culinary historian and author of The Africa Cookbook: Tastes of a Continent. This West African version gets its distinctive taste from creamy peanut butter and chile-laced chopped tomatoes.

2 tbsps olive oil
1 medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
1 celery stalk, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced (about 2 tsp.)
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks (about 2 cups)
1 14.5o/400gms can diced tomatoes with chili
1 lb/500gms butternut or acorn squash, cut into 1-inch chunks (about 3 cups)
1/2 lb/250gms cauliflower florets (about 4 cups)
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
6 cups cooked brown rice
1 head watercress, stems removed

Heat oil in large pot over medium-low heat. Add onion and celery, and cook 5 minutes, or until onion is translucent, stirring occasionally. Stir in ginger and garlic, and cook 5 minutes more, or until vegetables are soft. Add potato and tomatoes. Increase heat to medium, and cook 5 minutes, or until sauce is thickened, stirring occasionally. Stir in 2 cups water, and season with salt and pepper. Simmer partially covered, 10 minutes. Add squash and cauliflower, and cook 15 minutes more, or until vegetables are tender. Whisk together peanut butter and ½ cup warm water in small bowl. Add to stew, and cook 4 minutes, or until thickened, stirring constantly. Spoon over rice, and top with watercress. Serves 6.


Easy Peanut Butter Fudge
From Vegetarian at About.com
This is a super quick and easy recipe for vegan fudge that kids and adults will absolutely love.

1/2 cup vegan margarine
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup cocoa
1 cup peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla

Over medium low heat, melt the vegan margarine in a saucepan and stir in the sugar. Keeping the saucepan over low heat, add the cocoa and stir to combine. Next, add the peanut butter and vanilla and combine well. Spread the mixture into a shallow baking dish and refrigerate until firm.


No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie
From Dr McDougall's Website
Recipe By Colleen Patrick-Goudreau
Is there a better combination than chocolate and peanut butter? This is a rich and delicious no-bake pie that will have your guests clamoring for more!

2 cups non-dairy chocolate chips
12.3ozs/350gms silken tofu (firm)
1 1/2 cups natural peanut butter, crunchy or smooth
1/2 cup non-dairy milk
1 cup non-dairy chocolate chips (as an optional topping)
1 cup chopped nuts (as an optional topping)
1 Pecan-Date crust (see below)

Have your crust ready. Melt the 2 cups of chocolate chips in the microwave or simply by creating your own double boiler. (To do so, place the chips in a small saucepan. Set this pan in a larger pot that is filled with ¼-½ cup water. Heat over a medium flame on the stove and stir the chips in the small pot until they are melted.). In a food processor or high-powered blender, add the tofu, peanut butter, milk, and melted chocolate chips. Blend until very smooth, adding more milk, if desired. Pour the filling into the crust and refrigerate for 2 hours. Makes 8-10 servings, depending on the size of the slices. Serving Suggestions and Variations: For a Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie with a hard chocolate topping, after the pie has been chilled for 2 hours, melt 1 cup of non-dairy chocolate chips. Pour the melted chocolate over the top of the pie. If desired, add chopped nuts. Refrigerate for 2 additional hours. Or before pouring the pie filling into the crust, spread ½ cup of peanut butter (or more!) onto the crust.


Joni's Homemade Peanut Protein Bars
From VeganBodybuilding

1 cup natural peanut butter
8 tbsps of syrup
1 1/4 cups soy protein powder
1 cup of uncooked oatmeal

(I also added couple tablespoons of tahini just for the hell of it~Author) Mix the pb and syrup in a bowl, microwave on full for 80 secs. Add the rest and mix together. I wasn't 100% sure of the amounts I used but the end result should not be too dry, add syrup and/or water if the texture is too dry. Smooth into a tray and leave for 20 mins. Cut into 10 to 12 equal bars and wrap and store in fridge. Variation: Add raisins and nuts.


Cashew-Mushroom Pâté with Peanut Butter
From the Vegetarian Times
A hint of peanut butter holds the pâté together and makes it more spreadable. This recipe was a winner in our 2008 Restaurant Poll, and is a popular spread at Lovin' Spoonfuls restaurant in Tuscon, Arizona.

1/2 cup cashews
1 1/2 tbsps non-hydrogenated vegan margarine
4 cups sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup coarsely chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced (1 tsp.)
1 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1/8 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp cooking sherry
2 tsp chunky peanut butter
chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
roasted red pepper strips, for garnish
sourdough toast points (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F/175°C. Spread cashews on baking sheet, and toast 7 to 10 minutes, or until pale brown, shaking pan occasionally. Heat margarine in large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms, onion, garlic, curry powder, garlic salt, and cumin, and sauté 10 to 12 minutes, or until mushrooms are browned and most of liquid has evaporated. Add sherry, and cook 1 to 2 minutes more, or until alcohol has evaporated. Transfer to blender or food processor, and add cashews and peanut butter. Purée mixture in blender or food processor until relatively smooth. Transfer to bowl, and chill 2 hours, or overnight. Scoop pâté into center of plate or bowl, sprinkle with parsley, and decorate with red pepper strips. Surround with sourdough toast points, and serve. Serves 12

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23 comments:

aTxVegn said...

I am crazy for peanut butter, and now I can celebrate all month! I really love peanut stews, and the pate looks nice too.

The_Epicarrion said...

Three cheers for Mr. Peanut!

Daisy said...

Yummmmmm, they all sound fabulous. It's my favorite food in the universe. I can sit and eat a whole JAR if I'm not careful....:P

I love peanut butter cakes, pies, muffins, the works! Also, boiled peanuts, which probably isn't too popular there. It's a southern thang! :)

I'm gonna post that recipe pretty soon... football and boiled peanuts go together! They are too fabulous for mere words!

Jackie said...

I also love boiled peanuts but unfortunately I am unable to get fresh peanuts to boil here in South Africa like I used to do in Zimbabwe.
Probably a good thing as I would eat them at every meal and be as fat as a house LOL.

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

I'll definitely be celebrating almost every day of this month, because peanut butter is one of my favoite foods. I think I probably go through about a jar a month!

(It's weird, because I don't like peanuts at all!)

Urban Vegan said...

PB is truly a super food!

Marion said...

I am not fond of peanuts, but I do like the boiled ones. I'll have to let all the lovers of peanuts in my life know it's Peanut Butter Lovers Month!

Anonymous said...

Sorry to have to say this ,but the peanut is the least qualitive nut around.When one looks at most nuts they reach towards the light,only a very thin stalk connecting them to the Earth.Peanuts develop in the opposite direction,after flowering sending a shoot downwards to develop the nuts in total darkness.The quote by a former American President not surprising,another,Mr Jimmy Carter got himself into the White House with peanut butter wealth.It's a cheap food and therefore grown in monoculture over huge acreage with loads of pesticides and today quite possibly Geneticaly Modified.OK as asupplement in a varied diet,but certainly not the best source of protein in the Vegetal Kingdom.

Jackie said...

Yes Anonymous a peanut might not have some of the valuable properties of a tree nut but as mentioned it is not a nut but a legume. It is an inexpensive, protein rich spread with many benefits so in this time when budgets are tight I personally am rarely without a bottle of peanut butter in my fridge. Plus of course I, like many people nowadays, buy organic to avoid the sprays you mention and of course any GM product.

Rural Vegan said...

The next time I go on a peanut butter binge, I'm going to blame it on dental problems, ha! Great post!

Sheila said...

While I like peanut butter, I love boiled peanuts. My grandfather was a peanut farmer of sorts and introduced me to the treat as a little girl. He boiled a big pot of green peanuts outside.

CyberCelt said...

Thanks for visiting Endangered Spaces and commenting. I wrote a post about the Turkey issue.

http://endangeredspaces.blogspot.com/2008/11/take-turkey-out-of-thanksgiving.html

Linky love for the idea. Thanks!

The Organic Gardener said...

Hey Jackie,

My name is Zach. I am a young Vegan who is attending collage. I am writing a report on veganism, and need some external sources that will explain the meaning of "vegan." If you would be able to do that for me, I would greatly appriciate it. My draft is due Tue 18th and my final draft 20th. Also would it be alright if I quote you in my paper?

~Zach

P.S. Please send you reply on my blog site http://vioboy.blogspot.com

The Organic Gardener said...

Thanks, for letting me use your blog as a reference. I will be sure to give you credit for anything I get off your blog. Thanks again. If I do end up using your blog as part of my research, I will send you a copy.

~Zach

Joanna said...

that pb fudge is callin out my name!!!

i celebrate peanut butter every day of every month!! i love the stuff!

Leo (Healthy Tips For A Healthy Lifestyle) said...

That's a quote about peanut butter from a PRESIDENT?? :-D

Jackie said...

LOL in those days the Presidents weren't promoting GM foods or tied in with Monsanto so safe to quote.

Leo (Healthy Tips For A Healthy Lifestyle) said...

That's cool. :)

Thanks for joining my giveaway. :)

Alisa said...

I hadn't cruised the blogosphere in months, but at last am checking in on your blog ... as I am eating African Peanut Stew! Coincidence?

Vegan Subway Menu said...

MMm this made me hungry and those recipes sound dynamite.

Ruth said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Ruth

http://www.infrared-sauna-spot.info

Vivacious Vegan said...

Oh, I would simply cry if I were allergic to peanuts. Peanut butter is one of life's greatest pleasures!

cindy said...

I started using almond butter, it tastes great and has a good amount of calcium.