The French have obviously never taken to peanut butter. It’s scarce in supermarkets and if it is available it’s imported, which always puts the price up. I was introduced to peanut butter in 1970 when I emigrated to Canada and took a job as a ‘mother’s help’. The mother of the little boy I looked after bought peanut butter swirled in a jar with raspberry jam and I quickly became very fond of it. You could say it really stuck!
For the last eleven years I’ve managed to buy my supplies on trips back to the UK, but recently I’ve run out. A peanut butter crisis! Peanut butter withdrawal symptoms every morning at breakfast. Last week I scoured the shops and eventually discovered some in two places, the local Bio Co-op and another place that sells a few imported items. Sadly in both cases it was the smooth variety and I’m hooked on crunchy. Smooth just doesn’t cut it for a crunchy addict.
It’s odd, I’d given up on my search and resigned myself to being a person of no peanut butter, and then, like a miracle, up popped a recipe on Google. I was actually reading a recipe for Lithuanian Kugelis (which looks delicious) at the time. I immediately checked out the PB recipe and some other ones on YouTube. They looked so simple. I leapt into the car and shot off to buy the peanuts and with the help of my hubby, who is an excellent peanut-sheller, this is what happened.
We used peanuts that were still in their shells, but which were actually roasted. About 500 gms of shelled nuts required. Also about two tablespoons of peanut oil and a teaspoon of salt.
Shelling was fun
Blending was a hard grind because my old blender is obviously not powerful enough to cope easily with the job. The nuts plugged up at the base of the blender and nothing was moving. It took a good deal of stopping and starting and persistent poking, prodding and shaking to eventually get the right consistency.
But the end result was magnificent! Fantastic roasted flavour, and super-crunchy. Tomorrow I’ll try it on toast with a spoonful of home-made Seville orange marmalade on top. Home-made peanut butter it will be from now on. And maybe a new blender!