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From Field To Table

From Field To Table

In Praise Of Peanut Butter

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We all have our favorite foods. Foods that we turn to in times of stress or sorrow. Foods we eat simply because we love the taste and texture. For me, it is peanut butter, especially, when it is spread thick on seven-grain bread. I also enjoy peanut butter and banana sandwiches, PB and jelly, PB and tomato and pb and cheese. All give me a sense of satisfaction and well-being. This is one food that I do tend to overindulge in and, while delicious, peanut butter can add much calories and fat to your diet.

There are some ways to use peanut butter in your meal planning. For the people who like a little adventure, I suggest experimenting with sandwiches. Combine a tablespoon of your favorite brand with another of your favorite ingredients – say cucumbers and lettuce. If you are more conservative in your food choices, there are still many possibilities.

For those concerned about nutrition peanut butter used in moderation can be part of a healthy diet. It is a source of protein and Vitamin E – unless, of course, you have an allergy, in which case even having a jar of peanut butter opened near you can have serious consequences. It is because of the serious allergic reaction to peanuts and peanut products that some schools have banned these foods from the lunchroom. You may also want to consider allergies when planning a party.

One way you can do this is to circulate a suggested menu to your guests before the party and ask for their comments. Those who are allergic to certain foods or who have made certain food choices (such as vegans and vegetarians) can let you know. This will save any embarrassment and worse during the party.

I am a vegetarian and feel that it is my responsibility to inform people when they extend the invitation that this is my choice. This way we can discuss the possibilities before I arrive for dinner. This is also a wise practice if you know that you have a food allergy.

The peanut butter lovers among us owe thanks to George Washington Carver whose research and dedication with foods such as peanuts and sweet potatoes left us, among many other achievements, this rich legacy.

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