Category Archives: peanut butter

Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites

It’s Food Fun Friday (which, let’s face it, is every Friday) and I will share with you an alteration of a recipe that is a family favorite: Ohio Buckeye Cookies.

Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites

Inspiration for these cookies hit me on the head, literally, as I was on a walk. There is a tree called an Ohio buckeye (Aesculus glabra) which can be identified, according to my tree identification book:

Leaves have 5 to 7 short-stemmed, lanceolate leaflets, each 4 to 6 inches long and 0.5 to 1.5 inches wide. The yellow flowers, hairy below and with stamens longer than the petals, are borne in erect panicles, 5 to 7 inches long. The capsule, about 2 inches in diameter are spiny on the surface and usually enclose two seeds, about 1 to 1.5 inches in diameter. Brown bark is fissured and scaly. Grows 50 to 90 feet tall and 2 to 3 feet in diamet; crown oblong, rounded. Also leaves and twigs have an unpleasant odor when bruised.

Which probably means very little to most of you but, the plant nerd that I am, I couldn’t leave out any of those details.

Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Ohio Buckeye tree nut and leaves

It was this very nut that fell from it’s lofty branch and hit me squarely on the top of my head. Like Isaac Newton before me, I was struck with an idea (although I will not claim that my idea will change the course of science as we know it) and a craving for the buckeye cookies my grandma makes.

When I came home I looked up the recipe for this delectable treat. I was surprised by the amount of sugar added to many of the recipes I found and decided to work out a recipe for more of a protein bite in favor of this sugar packed morsel.

These are the ingredients I used.

Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: ingredients for Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites
Add peanut butter, rice milk and seeds to a medium sized bowl.
Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: ingredients for Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites

Stir until everything is mixed together. The mixture should be very sticky, but not liquidy at all. 
Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: peanut butter filling for Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites
Using a spoon and your hands, form 1-2 inch balls out of the mixture and place them on wax paper to keep them from sticking. 
Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites without chocolate
Put in the freezer for at least 30 minutes. Once the peanut butter balls are chilled, remove them from the freezer.
Melt your chocolate over a stovetop or using a microwave, being careful not to burn the chocolate. 
Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Melting Chocolate
While the chocolate is still melted, dip the peanut butter balls in the chocolate, covering them completely. 
Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites

Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites dipped

Return the chocolate covered peanut butter protein balls to the wax paper. 
Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites

Return to the freezer for 4 hours (or overnight). Store in refrigerator. Makes about 24 small peanut butter protein balls.
Maggie's Mind Mumbles//: Ohio Buckeye Protein Bites

Ingredients:

  • 1 jar (16 oz) natural peanut butter (I use chunky, but if you prefer smooth, use that)
  • 6-8 tablespoons rice milk (any other kind of milk should work fine too)
  • 6 tablespoons hemp seed, flax seed or chia seed
  • 6.4 oz dark chocolate, or about two regular sized chocolate bars (85% or higher cacao is ideal, I used Chocolove)

Directions:

Add peanut butter, almond milk and protein powder to a medium sized bowl. Stir until everything is mixed together. The mixture should be very sticky, but not liquidy at all. Using a spoon and your hands, form 1-2 inch balls out of the mixture and place them on wax paper to keep them from sticking. Put in the freezer for at least 30 minutes. Once the peanut butter balls are chilled, remove them from the freezer and melt your chocolate over a stovetop or using a microwave, being careful not to burn the chocolate. While the chocolate is still melted, dip the peanut butter balls in the chocolate, covering them completely. Return the chocolate covered peanut butter protein balls to the wax paper and return to the freezer for 4 hours (or overnight). Store in refrigerator. Makes about 24 small peanut butter protein balls.
And now for the poem that comes in every Chocolove chocolate bar:
Strong Dark
 
Sonnet 75
So are you to my thoughts as food to life,
Or as sweet-seasoned showers are to the ground;
And for the peace of you I hold such strife
As ‘twixt a miser and his wealth is found.
Now proud as an enjoyer, and anon
Doubting the filching age will steal his treasure,
Now counting best to be with you alone,
Then bettered that the world may see my pleasure,
Sometimes all full with feasting on your sight,
And by and by clean starved for a look,
Possessing or pursuing no delight
Save what is had, or must from you be took.
Thus do I pine and surfeit day by day,
Or gluttoning on all, or all away.
William Shakespeare 

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Homemade Any-Nut Butter

 
Nut butters are quick and easy way to make a meal, but unfortunately the cheaper one are packed with sugars that gives you an sugar spike in energy and then a super crash shortly after. The ones with less sugar are more expensive and sometimes it is hard to justify that cost. Lucky for you, now I’m going to let you in on a secret: nut butters are the easiest most mindless thing you can make in your kitchen as long as you have a food processor or blender. Making nut butter at home is so simple and cheap, you seriously won’t believe it’s this easy.

You can use this recipe for walnut, hazelnut, almond, peanut, cashew, pecan, etc. butter. Now my plant nerd is going to come out real quick so bear with me: not all of these are actually “nuts,” for example a peanut is actually a legume and an almond is a seed inside what is called a drupe. But in the world eating, we don’t specify such things and refer to them in an umbrella category of nuts… and I’m NUTS about each and every one… groan I let out my bad joke side too, sorry.

Ingredients:

2 cups of your favorite nut
Mix-ins such as salt, honey, cocoa powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place nuts in one layer on baking sheet and roast for about 12 minutes. This time may vary depending on oven, so keep an eye on it between 8-15 minutes. For raw nut butters: skip the roasting. Add nuts to a food processor and pulse. You will have to scrape down the sides about every two minutes or so. It starts out making a meal, but will eventually turn into a paste. Just continue to process and scrape down the sides. Add any mix-in you like and enjoy!

Peanut Butter

 no extra ingredients, just peanuts…

 A few pulses later,

and a few more,

starting to look like peanut butter,

Perfect! Took about 10 minutes. I keep old containers and rinse them out so I always have a few peanut butter jars around but any airtight container in the fridge is fine. Estimated cost: $2.00/12 oz (Average jar holds about 16 oz and cost around $5.00)

Almond Joy Butter

 Almonds… mmmm…


Add some cocoa powder and coconut flakes to taste

 Pulse…

 If it’s dry or chalky add some almond milk (about a tablespoon at a time until desired consistency)

 Looking good keep pulsing.

Done! This one took about 20 minutes of pulsing and it smells heavenly without any added sugar. Yay! Estimated cost: $7.00/24 oz (Average jar is about 16 oz and cost about $9.00)

Save money: check
Improve health: check
Winning

Tell me about nut butters you’ve made in the comments 🙂
 

Why I Don’t Make Apple Sandwiches (anymore)

I remember when I first discovered apple sandwiches on pinterest. I thought the idea was so novel and I’m sure you’ve seen the idea floating around the internet. I decided to try it out. It was seriously the best thing I ever tasted. I ate it at least once every day. This is the general process.

Slice the apple. Using a cookie cutter or apple corer cut out the core, or a knife works too but it’s not as neat looking. Can we just take a minute to notice the lime green (I guess you would actually call it apple green) apple shaped cutting board and the lime green (again probably apple green) apple-picture apple corer. This is very matchey-match, is it not? Totally unintentional.

Spread your peanut butter. I like creamy but crunchy works fine.

Sprinkle some granola on two of your apple slices and add chocolate chips or raisins to the other two (or more granola).

Then stick it together.

After a while this process became irksome to me. Peanut butter does not like to stick to apples; I got more on my hands than the slices. The granola always landed everywhere but the peanut butter and precision with the chocolate chips was tedious. So now I cut apples like a normal person…

Add some granola and chocolate chips to a small dish,

Smear in some peanut butter,

And stir it around. It’s the same flavor combination with about half the work. You’re welcome.

Oh boy, you’re in for a treat!

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