One day early on this school year, Claire came home and said, “Mommy, you bake the bread for my sandwich, and we use our homemade jam. We should mash up some peanuts with a rock or something instead of buying peanut butter, so the whole thing will be homemade!” Well, that’s a girl after my own heart! We haven’t bought peanut butter since (though we haven’t quite resorted to rock-mashing either). It’s super-easy to make peanut butter, costs a little less than buying good store-bought, and tastes miles better than the best gourmet peanut butter you’ve ever tasted. It’s fresher, nuttier, toastier, just better. It takes five minutes, and kids old enough to run the food processor can easily make it by themselves.
We don’t usually measure the ingredients, but we did this time so we could share some semblance of a recipe:
- 2 cups toasted Valencia peanuts (available in bulk at most food coops, Whole Foods, and many grocery stores–organic nuts will be around three bucks a pound). If you buy raw peanuts, toast them at 350 degrees for 20 minutes before making your PB.
- 4-7 tablespoons of peanut oil (canola works fine if you don’t have peanut oil on hand)
- Kosher salt to taste
Put the nuts in the small bowl of the food processor, fitted with the metal blade (or the blender). Add 4 tablespoons of oil, and blend until rather smooth, though the butter will remain somewhat grainy. If dry, add more oil, a tablespoon at a time. You’ll probably use about 6.
Add salt to taste, but be careful–the kosher salt will make the PB taste divine, but a pinch goes a long way!
Decant into a jar, and refrigerate. SO yummy!
For a transformative PB & J experience, try it with the Best Sandwich Bread Recipe Ever, and your favorite homemade jam. It’s also great on apples, or straight out of the jar on a spoon (not that I would know…).
I love how pleased my daughter is to announce that her sandwich is entirely homemade. We’ve come such a long way from the days when it was a stigma to have lovely, homemade, brown bread, because all the middle-class kids had Wonderbread. Enjoy.