Considered by many to epitomise the American diet, peanut butter needs no introduction. I'm told a staggering 83% of Americans purchase peanut butter and that's no surprise when it seems that 99% of their meals are inspired by the ingredient; peanut cookies to peanut roasted pork, the stuff moisturises them from the inside out.
Though no American blood runs through me I'm honoured to admit that I too have a slight addiction, and will happily dip my carrots, top my toast and flavour my cupcakes with it. But there is a drawback, as with every umptuous product peanut butter comes with a red flashing health sign. There definitely is an obesity stigma attached to the pots of golden gloop that reads, 'Eating peanut butter will have a detrimental effect on your life expectancy' but what's frustrating is that the likes of Skippy and Sunpat simply bring down the product.
Peanut butter is very close to a perfect food. Packed with protein, heart-healthy fats, vitamins B3 and E, magnesium, fibre and anti-oxidants. Factory-made peanut butter, however, contains a few other extras: sugar, salt, rapeseed oil and palm fat. The big companies take something as simple and beautiful as a ground-up peanut and taint it with their adulterations; goodbye to the heart-healthy monounsaturated fats and hello to the artery-clogging polyunsaturated fats.
But the beautiful thing is that is super easy to make yourself so there is no need to poison your body. I'm told every deli in New York has machines that simply crush your peanuts for you but sadly this gadget is yet to cross the proverbial pond. Though yesterday I was taught that you really can make your own in the time it takes toast a bagel by merely dusting off the old Magimix. Half of me wants to keep the secret but the other half wants people to know how clever I am. Today, I've decided on the latter.
Your Very Own Home Made Peanut Butter
Roasted Peanuts (with or without salt depending on preference)
Pour the peanuts into the food processor and blend until smooth, keep going, its takes about 10 minutes. Pour into your own jar and keep in the fridge for at least three weeks. Don't stop there, though. Make almond butter, or cashew butter, pistachio butter, brazil-nut, maybe a blend?