Chunky Maple Peanut Butter

pb sandwich

Peanut butter is possible my favorite food (my go-to sandwich is peanut butter-banana-fluff on cinnamon raisin Ezekial bread). It can dress up the plainest of foods: rice cakes or celery (with plenty of ants of course), enhance foods that already taste good: these peanut butter steak tacos are awesome, or partner with foods that would otherwise be lonely: what is jelly, chocolate, or apple without a heavy slather of peanut butter?

I love making my own peanut butter. I like to mix and match my sweeteners (usually honey or maple syrup-and even white or dark chocolate sometimes), control the salt level, and add as much texture as I like. Chunky has always been my favorite, because, what could be more joyous than some added crunch in your life? This peanut butter is extra chunky, but, if you like it smooth, toss the reserved peanuts in at the beginning with the rest of them. Some people may be surprised by the amount of added oil used in this recipe, but I really hate it when my natural peanut butter is dry and crumbly after a week. Melted coconut and canola oil make for a great substitutions for peanut oil. If this peanut butter seems thin at first, know that it will firm up quite a bit in the refrigerator.

photo

My twin brother, Michael, is a die hard Skippy fan. He refuses to use any of the natural Teddie Peanut Butter that inhabits our fridge at home. However, after I made this batch of chunky maple peanut butter for my family, I won his approval. With a little bit of time, and a lot more batches of peanut butter, I think that even he will become a natural peanut butter convert.

The Bite: The palate, or roof of your mouth, is divided into two components: the hard palate and the soft palate. Both of these components help to form the ball of food, or bolus, that gets sent down your esophagus. The hard palate is a bony structure which makes up the front most two thirds of the roof of your mouth. It’s basically the entire region that peanut butter gets stuck to when you eat a spoonful. It’s particularly important in articulation for speech and its presence allows you to chew your food and breath at the same time. The soft palate contributes to the back third of the roof of your mouth. It is the only movable part of your palate, and is made up of muscle and connective tissue. This palate creates space for yawning, helps close off the passageway to your nose (no one wants a peanut out their nose), and is sensitive to the touch (please don’t try this or you will probably gag). So, while your palate is made up of two components with different functions, you need them both if you want to fully enjoy your next PB & J.

Chunky Maple Peanut Butter

Ingredients

16 oz unsalted roasted peanuts, 1/2 cup reserved
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 heaping teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4-1/2 cup peanut oil

Directions

Add the peanuts (reserving 1/2 cup for later) to either a food processor or Vitamix. Pulse the nuts until a course meal has formed. Add the maple syrup, salt and oil. Process the mixture until smooth and creamy-about 5 minutes (you may need to stop your machine from running and stir the peanut butter as you go because the machine may over heat). Chop the reserved 1/2 cup of peanuts, add them to the smooth peanut butter mix, and store in a jar in the refrigerator.

Note: I have never had a problem with my peanut butter going bad, probably because I go through it so quickly, but this should keep for at least a month, probably even longer, if stored in the fridge.

Source: Dental Bites

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