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Archive for October, 2012

I read an article today in the NY Times about peanut butter and pickle sandwiches. My first response was much like yours — ewww. But then I got to thinking.

I love peanut butter. It’s the perfect food for me. You don’t have to refrigerate it, you don’t need to thaw it out. It goes equally well on bread or on crackers, with jelly it’s a meal, and if all else fails, it can be eaten straight out of the jar with a spoon.

It has protein but no cholesterol. As I said, the perfect food for me.

In my early years, it was mostly with jelly, especially my dad’s blackberry jelly. I have pleasant memories of picking blackberries and taking them home and squeezing the berries through cheesecloth to get the juice so that daddy could cook it into jelly. I always imagined he was using a secret family recipe handed down by generations of Bernards. My bubble was burst a few years ago when he told me the recipe was on the package of wax he uses in canning.

My Uncle Bill introduced me to the finer points of the grilled peanut butter sandwich when I was 6 or 7. I think he got the idea from Elvis, or maybe Elvis got the idea from him, but whoever came up with the idea is a genius. It’s made just like a grilled cheese, only with peanut butter instead of cheese inside. The warm peanut butter and the crisp buttery bread make for the perfect breakfast or lunch.

Elvis liked to put bananas on his grilled peanut butter sandwiches. I tried one on a dare at Graceland once. Somewhere there’s a video of it. I’m not a fan, though if there was a plate of grilled peanut butter and banana sandwiches, I’d eat one. Ask my friends in Lakeland. I’ll eat a whole peanut or a pickled bar egg. All you have to do is dare.

So I got to thinking today as I read the NY Times column that he might be on to something. The author’s favorite is bread and butter pickles with Smucker’s Natural peanut butter. Being a recent convert to Smucker’s Natural (Ingredients: peanuts. Less than 1% salt. Now go read the ingredients in JIF.), I said why not?

I don’t have any bread and butter pickles, but I keep hamburger dill slices around. Not bad. Good contrast in textures. Thicker pickle slices would be better. The author said he also liked to slice Claussen pickles so I’ll give that a try. And I’ll toast the bread at some point, too, because that’s how I roll.

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