| Melissa D’Arabian |
POWDERED peanut butter sounds, pardon the pun, a bit nuts.
While fitness buffs sang its praises when it first hit the scene a few years ago, I scoffed. But after seeing it take up more and more space on the shelves of my local supermarket, I caved and bought it for the first time.
At first I stayed fairly traditional in my usage: I added a scoop to my chocolate or banana morning smoothie, or added it to cookie dough to make a lower calorie peanut butter cookie.
But it grew on me. Soon, I was adding it to curries and sprinkling it on my oatmeal or over frozen yoghurt. It really is quite good.
Powdered peanut butter is just what it sounds like – peanut butter that has had all of the moisture and most of the fat removed. You’re left with a fine powder (similar in texture to cocoa powder) that has the flavour of regular peanut butter. It can be used as is or reconstituted. For the latter, you just stir one tablespoon of water or other liquid (such as almond milk) into two tablespoons of powdered peanut butter until smooth.
One serving (two tablespoons) of reconstituted peanut butter has a fraction of the fat and calories of traditional peanut butter – 45 calories, five grammes of protein, 1.5 grammes of fat and one gramme of sugar. Compare that to the 188 calories, 16 grammes of fat, 8 grammes of protein and 3 grammes of sugar in the real deal.
I love the creamy decadence of real peanut butter as much as anyone, but it’s worth considering powdered if there are times when you want the flavour with a leaner profile.
SALTY-SWEET PEANUT-HONEY POP-CORN
Prefer the microwave? Use unflavoured plain popcorn and pop according to package directions, then transfer to a large bowl and proceed with the recipe starting with the honey.
Start to finish: 10 minutes
1 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 cup popcorn kernels
1/4 cup honey
3 tablespoons powdered peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
In a heavy, large saucepan over medium, heat the coconut oil. Sprinkle in the popcorn kernels and give a quick stir with a wooden spoon to coat the kernels in oil.
Continue cooking and stirring until the first kernel pops. Once it does, cover the pan and, using oven mitts, grasp the pan by both the handle and the lid, then gently shake the pan (on the heat) to keep the kernels moving as they continue to pop. Do this for about two minutes, or until there is a 2-second delay between pops.
Remove the pan from the heat and transfer the popcorn to a large bowl. Be very careful; the popcorn will be very hot.
Drizzle the honey over the popcorn, then use wooden spoons to toss to coat evenly.
Sprinkle the peanut butter and salt over the popcorn, then toss again to coat. – (AP)