5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.
Peanut butter and jelly: It's the salty-sweet combination immortalized in lunchbox lore that we always come back to.
And chances are, if you were a peanut butter-loving kid, you're now a peanut butter-loving adult.
Case in point, meet Lee Zalben. Zalben - appropriately nicknamed “The Peanut Butter Guy" - is the founder and president of Peanut Butter & Co.
While Zalben agrees nothing can replace the traditional PB&J sandwich, he's certainly not opposed to creating delicious riffs on the childhood classic.
These recipes are downright nutty by nature.
Five New Twists on PB&J: Lee Zalben
In the meantime, use a small saucepan and a low flame to gently heat some grape juice concentrate or grape jelly until it reaches a syrup-like consistency. Serve the French toast with the grape syrup for a nutty twist on a classic brunch dish."
2. The PB&J Turkey Burger Theorem
"It may sound weird, but don’t knock it before you try it! Burger joints all over the country have been schmearing peanut butter on burgers to great acclaim over the last few years. This takes it one step further by adding jelly to the mix, so why not invoke a little Thanksgiving spirit?
You could prepare this by adding peanut butter to your burger meat, but for maximum PB&J enjoyment, start with a grilled turkey burger, a dollop of peanut butter and a thick slice of cranberry jelly, all sandwiched between an oversized Parker House roll.
You could also prepare this using softer 'whole berry' cranberry sauce and spoon that on top of the peanut butter, but that wouldn’t be quite so much fun."
3. PB&J Vinaigrette (Roasted Aromatic Peanut Oil, Raspberry Vinegar)
Roasted aromatic peanut oil has a rich, dark, nutty flavor that, when combined with some raspberry vinegar, a dash of salt and a few twists of freshly ground black pepper, will add a very light, very grown-up and very nuanced PB&J flavor to some salad greens.
Use about 3/4 cup oil for every 1/4 cup of vinegar and season to taste. Some chopped shallots are nice in this dressing too."
4. PB&J Glazed Ham (Peanut Butter, Apricot Jam)
5. PB&J Hot Wings (Peanut Butter, Apple Jelly, Chili Flakes)
Gently heat the contents of a 10 oz jar of apple jelly with 1/2 cup of smooth peanut butter until combined. Add two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, one tablespoon of red pepper flakes, one teaspoon of cayenne pepper, and one half teaspoon of smoked, hot paprika.
Line a shallow baking dish with foil and add 1 dozen raw chicken wings. Pour the PB&J sauce over the wings and toss to coat.
Cover with foil and cook at 375°F for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and baste the wings with the sauce in the pan.
Finish cooking uncovered until browned, about 10 more minutes (watch closely to make sure they don't burn). Complete the dish by garnishing with celery sticks stuffed with cream cheese and topped with peanuts and raisins!"
How do you push the boundaries of one of the most classic sandwiches of all time - the PB&J? Spread your secrets in the comments.
Is there someone you'd like to see in the hot seat? Let us know in the comments below and if we agree, we'll do our best to chase 'em down.
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