Looking at ourselves and the world through the lens of the 21st century.

Saturday, March 26, 2022

My Favorite Flavor

If you know me, you know I am a sucker for weird holidays. Did you know that March is “National Peanut Awareness” month? According to Peanut Allergy Facts, about four percent of teens and adults have peanut allergies. Peanuts have always had an important role in my life. Another little-known fact about me: My family, and by extension I mean “I”, owns a peanut farm.

My whole life, I have always said “my family” because I never felt part of that equation. I have always felt far removed from that scenario as it never seemed possible t that I would inherit the farm; the farm would never make it past my mom’s generation. Then, my mom died, and now I own half of a farm.

Going back generations, my family had always been farmers. My mom even grew up on the farm until my grandparents moved permanently to town when she was in college. That was when they allowed someone else to farm their land for a share of the profits. The farm grew other things besides peanuts depending on the season and who was in charge of farming it. Somehow, though, the farm was always there in the background. We visited it during crop seasons, and my grandparents dealt with the taxes. 

Growing up, I have many memories involving peanuts. Mid-fall, whenever the crop was harvested, my grandmother would receive bags of raw peanuts that she liked to shell herself. So, I would sit with my Maw Maw and shell peanuts; I began to hate peanuts.

As I mentioned in my last blog, I grew up poor. A staple in many less-fortunate households is peanut butter and white bread. Peanut butter is pretty sustainable and if you are hungry, it can be satisfying on the cheap. Aside from peanut butter sandwiches, we ate peanut butter and saltine crackers almost every day. To this day, my grandma still likes peanut butter and saltine crackers for an afternoon snack and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner.

After I moved out, I didn’t eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches because they reminded me of my childhood and poverty. Then things changed. Three years ago, I had a life-changing surgery that altered the way that I eat and taste food (watch for a blog post in the near future). If you ask me to name my favorite thing to eat, my answer now will be peanut butter (or any kind of nut butter, really). Why? Quite simply, my taste buds changed, or adapted, since I started my weight-loss journey. Despite my earlier disdain, I am obsessed with the flavor. It no longer represents poverty but protein, and protein is life-sustaining. Nuts and nut butter were among the few things my stomach could tolerate post-surgery, and I enjoyed a bite of peanut butter as a “sweet escape” if I wanted something to curb my cravings.

It’s funny how we tend to avoid certain things that remind us of our childhood. It’s not like peanuts held a particular trauma for me. I may have simply not enjoyed the taste. I’m thankful now that I can look back at unshelled peanuts and be reminded of my Maw Maw but I will always buy them shelled in the store.

My favorite ways to eat nut butter:
  • Perfect Bars™: Perfect Bar™  is an organic, gluten-free, high-protein bars made out of nut butter. They offer many different flavors at your local grocery store, but my favorite will always be the dark chocolate chip.
  • Spread on a keto waffle: One of my favorite things to make is a Birch Bender’s® keto waffle. You can buy waffle mix or ready-made frozen waffles. I like to pair my waffle with Fix and Fogg Everything Butter®.
  • Keto Peanut Butter Balls: I use this recipe from Beaming Baker, and I like to use Swerve®, sweetener, and 365 Organic Creamy Peanut Butter®.
  • Keto Fat Bombs: I recommend this recipe from That Low Carb Life using Swerve® and Lily’s® baking chips.
  • As a dip with Cauliflower Pretzels: My favorite cauliflower pretzels are From the Ground Up®.
  • Keto Peanut Butter Pie: I found this recipe from All Day I Dream About Food using the same keto ingredients mentioned above.
  • Keto PBJ: My favorite keto bread is Chompie’s®, and my favorite sugar-free jam is Good Good®.
  • Smoothie King Keto Champ Coffee™: I love a good protein shake and this smoothie features almond butter.
  • Premier Protein™  Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake: I can’t leave this out because protein shakes are a part of my everyday life now.

I also want to give a small-business shout-out to Spread Happiness Nut Butters and their keto-butter products as well as Ten Berries and their low-sugar jams. I first ran across these businesses at the Denton Community Market a few years ago when I moved back to the area.

I want to hear from my readers. Do you like peanut butter? What are some of your favorite peanut recipes? E-mail me at modernmusingsmmc@gmail.com and share your recipes with me.

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