I am the most recent in long line of peanut butter parents. Growing up, my dad relied on peanut butter to get him through the nights when my mom worked at the hospital. Triple-decker pb&j sandwiches complemented peanut butter spoon snacks. There is no smell in this world that reminds me more of my childhood than a toasted slice of homemade sour-dough bread with a thin layer of peanut butter spread across it.
Peanut butter is a staple in our own family life. I’m so grateful that neither of my children have a peanut allergy because I rely on peanut butter as a crutch for everything from food to entertainment. While I often supplement our supply with the crunchy variety and a few other nut butters, you can be assured that a commercial-sized jar of creamy peanut butter is available in my pantry.
I’ve noted below some of my favorite uses for peanut butter in no particular order, but I do suggest trying them all in due time!
Peanut Butter Play Dough, edible
- 1 cup peanut butter
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 cups powdered sugar
Mix until smooth and store in a large ziptop bag with no air.
Peanut Butter Pasta
This is so comforting and so addicting. It’s an easy weeknight supper for any mom, but especially one who doesn’t have much prep time. I serve it with pork, chicken, or without meat. It would make an awesome Lenten Friday meal.
A fun song to teach you kiddos about how peanut butter and jelly come to be! Great for the upcoming planting season. I remember the year my dad made homemade jelly from a grapevine on our fence inNorth Minneapolis. I can even picture the clear diamond textured tall water glasses with the smooth rim that he used for storage. It is so amazing to help your kiddos understand where their food comes from – even greater when we can connect it to the Lord’s vision of the vine and the branches.
Peanut Butter Smoothies
Add a spoonful of peanut butter to your favorite smoothie recipe! Not only does it add a smooth depth of flavor, but the boost of protein is good for energy.
Here’s a favorite of mine and I just add a spoonful of peanut butter. Oatmeal is another great trick for smoothies. I run regular oats through the blender or food processor to come up with a finer oat flour of sorts.
Peanut Butter Fast
Try fasting from peanut butter for just one week. When you’ve completed your one week fast from peanut butter, buy a jar of peanut butter to donate as a family. On a normal basis a malnourished child inHaitireceives 1 jar of peanut butter per week; your fast from peanut butter counts!
These seemed to me like a modern day, but much less messy, version of my dad’s peanut butter spoon concept. A perfect little snack for when I hear, “Mama, my tummy hurts!” 30 minutes before dinner is to be served.
A Vision of a Hazelnut, St. Julian of Norwich
And in this vision he showed me a little thing, the size of a hazel-nut, lying in the palm of my hand, and to my mind’s eye it was as round as any ball. I looked at it and thought, “What can this be?” And the answer came to me, “It is all that is made”. I wondered how it could last, for it was so small I thought it might suddenly disappear. And the answer in my mind was, “It lasts and will last for ever because God loves it; and in the same way everything exists through the love of God”. In this little thing I saw three attributes: the first is that God made it, the second is that he loves it, the third is that God cares for it. But what does this mean to me? Truly, the maker, the lover, the carer: for until I become one substance with him, I can never have love, rest or true bliss; that is to say, until I am bound to him that there may be no created thing between my God and me….
Then God brought our Lady into my mind. I saw her spiritually in bodily likeness, a meek and simple maid, young of age, in the same bodily form as when she conceived. God also showed me part of the wisdom and truth of her soul so that I understood with what reverence she beheld her God who is her maker, and how reverently she marveled that he chose to be born of her, a simple creature of his own making. For what made her marvel was that he who was her Maker chose to be born of the creature he had made… With this sight I really understood that she is greater in worthiness and fullness of grace than all that God made below her; for nothing that is made is above her except the blessed Manhood of Christ. This little thing that is made that is below our Lady Saint Mary, God showed it to me as small as if it had been a hazel-nut. It was so small I thought it might have disappeared.
Amberly Boerschinger is the Woman at the Inkwell. Her weeks in family and parish life play out kind of like peanut butter: some are smooth, some are crunchy, bumpy, and hard to swallow, and some just have her melting all over the place. However, there is nothing more wonderful than the peanut butter fingers of her children John Ross and Clara just so long as she doesn’t discover it streaked across her pants in the middle of a staff meeting.