We salute America's favorite spread
(Page 2 of 2)
Jams and jellies have been around since the 1500s. Peanut butter only since 1890. When did they get together? Some food historians say World War II soldiers may have added jelly to peanut butter to make it less sticky. Ration menus for soldiers and lunch-counter menus of that era list peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.Skip to next paragraph
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
But it's likely that PB&J dates as far back as the 1910s. A reader of this newspaper born in 1913 wrote to say that her mother had been at the Battle Creek, Mich., sanatorium run by the brothers of Mr. Kellogg (the man who patented peanut butter). That's where her mother first encountered PB&J.
But if you've had enough of peanut butter and jelly by now, you might try some savory alternatives. A restaurant in New York City, Peanut Butter & Co., offers spicy peanut butter and grilled chicken with pineapple jam, peanut butter and pickles, of white-chocolate peanut butter with orange marmalade.
The Krema Nut Co. of Columbus, Ohio, makes and sells 12 kinds of peanut-butter sandwiches. Owner Mike Giunta says the two most popular combinations are the Nutty-Mallow (peanut butter with marshmallow fluff) and the Buckeye (peanut-butter with chocolate hazelnut spread). There's also Elvis's favorite, the P.B. Nanna, a toasted peanut-butter sandwich with honey and sliced bananas.
The Krema Nut Co. knows its stuff. They are the oldest peanut-butter company still in operation today. They first started churning out the crunchy and creamy stuff in 1908.
Finally, here are some peanut facts from the National Peanut Board to help you appreciate your next legume-paste sandwich:
George Washington Carver invented more than 300 uses for peanuts, including axle grease.
Sen. Barry Goldwater once shaved with peanut butter on a camping trip. (He used creamy style.)
The peanut has been to the moon. Astronaut Alan Shepard took one with him on his space flight.
It's easy and fun, and a tasty way to experiment with food.
You will need:
1 1/2 cups unsalted roasted peanuts
1 tablespoon peanut oil
Food processor (You'll also need to ask an adult to help you with this.)
Measuring cups and spoons
Directions for smooth peanut butter:
1. Pour the peanuts into the bowl. Add the oil, and mix well. Pour the mixture into the food processor.
2. Blend the mixture until it's very smooth. (Try some!)
3. Store your smooth peanut butter in a sealed container in the refrigerator. It will be good for two weeks.
For chunky peanut butter:
1. Take about 1/4 cup out of the 1 1/2 cups of peanuts and set them aside.
2. Pour the rest of the peanuts into the mixing bowl. Add the oil, and stir. Pour the mixture into the food processor.
3. Process the mixture until it's very smooth. Stop the food processor. Pour in the 1/4 cup of peanuts you had set aside. Carefully stir them in a little.
4. Process a few seconds more to create the chunks in your chunky peanut butter. (Peanut butter makers used to stir in the 'hearts' they'd removed from the peanuts to make chunky peanut butter!)
5. Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator. It will keep
about two weeks.
www.gotmilk.com/contest.html Wild peanut-butter sandwich recipes from kids. Try the peanut butter, dried cherries, crisped-rice, and chocolate chips combination.
www.peanutbutterlovers.com The Peanut Advisory Board site has history, recipes, and more.
www.nationalpeanutboard.com/funfacts.html Fun facts from the National Peanut Board.
www.lib.iastate.edu/spcl/gwc/bio.html Find out more about peanut pioneer George Washington Carver.