Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Nutty for peanut butter fudge
Growing up, I had a friend who was deathly allergic to peanuts. And I always felt so bad for her. After all, in the eyes of a child, what could be worse than never being able to enjoy a simple PB&J sandwich? Even today, peanut butter remains one of my favorite treats. I slather it on bananas, use it to spice up Asian vegetable and meat dishes, and, of course, it's a fabulous ingredient in any number of dessert recipes…Which brings me to today's topic. Happy National Peanut Butter Fudge Day! And really, it couldn't come along at a better time. For all of you trying to figure out what sweet treat to bring to the big Thanksgiving meal Thursday, this certainly qualifies - and your dish will stand out in what will likely be a sea of pumpkin and pecan pies.
For me, peanut butter fudge invokes fond memories of Christmas in Chicago. Every holiday season, my mom (shout out, Mom!) makes killer peanut butter and chocolate fudge. She always has to make several batches, though, because it's so in-demand with friends, neighbors, old sports coaches…you get the picture…all clamoring for a few pieces.
If you're worried about adding more goodies to what will be a food-filled week, look on the bright side: peanut butter is good for you! It's an excellent source of protein, vitamins B3 and E, niacin, folate and manganese. In addition, peanuts are rich in antioxidants - all benefits to reducing the risks of cardiovascular disease and boosting heart health.
Here are a few more peanut butter factoids.
1. Peanut butter is found in about 75% of American homes.
2. Peanuts are not actually nuts. They are legumes, like beans, peas and lentils.
3. Americans eat 3 pounds of peanut butter per person every year. That's about 700 million pounds, or enough to coat the floor of the Grand Canyon.
4. Peanut shells are found in kitty litter, wallboard, fireplace logs, paper, animal feed and sometimes as fuel for power plants.
5. Two peanut farmers have been elected President of the United States: Thomas Jefferson and Jimmy Carter.
6. One acre of peanuts will make 30,000 peanut butter sandwiches.
Now that you can impress your friends with your random peanut knowledge, here's a recipe to wow their palates. And yes, it's sugar-free!
Peanut Butter Fudge
More low calorie recipes here
Finally, because it's almost Thanksgiving - and I'm in a particularly giving mood today - I'll leave you with one of my favorite commercials ever. Although it's about milk, it heavily features a peanut butter sandwich.
Two clues: Who shot Alexander Hamilton? And Aaaawon Buhh!