The Peanut Butters

peanut butter spread on breadWhich do you like?

There are rather hard and dry. You almost see no oil separating to top. It is getting harder and harder to get as you dig deeper. It is also harder to spread and feels dry in mouth. My assessment! This could be less grease or added with filler like cornstarch or wheat flour. If there is really no sign of oil separating to top, then some kind of emulsifier is mixed during the process, skim milk perhaps.

Fluid. If you are fan of the above described product, then, fluid kind might not be your type. It is probably due to two reasons. It is either no filler is mixed or too much oil is added. This has the advantage of creamier texture but expect a faster clear oil formation.

Chunky. It contains whole roasted peanut inside. It feels like crackers within a bread. Rather, a crackling in spread if you are eating the product as is. I prefer this as I enjoy the cracking sound. Whole roasted peanuts have the tendency to float so stirring it a bit before use is advised.

Chocopeanut. A friend of mind tried making this by mixing peanuts and cocoa nibs. The lowest possible proportion of nibs with acceptable chocolate flavor hardened the end product. He did not try using cocoa powder which I think is more suitable.

For the masses. The affordable which cost more or less twenty pesos and available in many sari-sari stores. Usually sweet, rough textured, visible peanut skins and some tiny bubbles. Often unlabeled and you never know who to go after in case of food poisoning.

If you are looking for all natural and unsweetened product. There is no other place to look at except for vegetarian shop. Just keep in mind that oil separation is a natural phenomenon and you can always stir it before use. Do not consume on the slightest sign of rancidity.

Is Peanut Butter High in Uric Acid?

peanut butter with freckles

I bought a peanut butter from my auntie’s sari-sari store. It was packed in a small plastic jar and cost only 20 pesos. I am not an avid fan of this spread but I like a taste of it once in a while. Buying a big jar is not ideal, it will only end up in storage for too long and oil will surface eventually.

Before opening the jar, I noticed the numerous dark brown spots. I wonder what are those. I took a picture using my point-and-shoot digital camera. Then I continue spreading the peanut butter on my bread anyway. I guessed those spots do not affect the eating quality and safety.

peanut butter with freckles

A friend of mine is manufacturing peanut butter. His product is more superior than this. But I never want to buy from him cause he is selling his product in large jar package. I met him and showed the picture. He told me that those dark spot are peanut skins. Some peanut butter manufacturers are using peanuts with skins intact.

My friend is using the skin-less peanuts because skins may contribute unwanted aftertaste and are source of uric acid. However, skins make the spread more fragrant and have antioxidant properties when roasted.

Uric acid? They are the criminals causing gouty arthritis. Uric acid are naturally produce by the system but excess causes unwanted pains.

Peanuts and peanut butter are really source of uric acid but the level is tolerable, only 79 mg/100g. Eating peanut is negligible as compared to eating meat. Avoid consuming peanut skins if your are really conscious about it.

Philippine Standard Specifications for Peanut Butter

Identity

  • Peanut butter is the food prepared from good quality peanuts absolutely free from molds, by grinding properly shelled and roasted bleached peanuts, in which the germs may or may not be included or unblanched peanuts including the skin and germs to which maybe added safe and suitable seasoning and stabilizing
    ingredients.
  • It shall have a medium brown color, spreadable, maybe moderately, but not excessively thin and stiff; in stabilized type, there maybe no more than slightly noticeable oil separation or in non-stabilized type, there maybe no excessive oil separation that causes noticeable dryness or that required more than moderate
    mixing to disperse the oil, free from objectionable flavors and aromas, and freefrom dark particles.
  • The seasoning and stabilizing ingredients shall not exceed 12 per cent of the weight of the finished product. The fat content shall not exceed 55%. It shall contain not more than 2 per cent water insoluble inorganic residue.
  • The seasoning and stabilizing ingredients referred to in paragraph (a) are substances that perform a useful function and are regarded as suitable except that artificial flavoring, artificial sweeteners, chemical preservatives, added vitamins and color additives are not suitable ingredients of peanut butter. Stabilizing
    ingredients shall be hydrogenated vegetable oils including partially hydrogenated vegetable oils.

Label Statement of Optional Ingredients

  • If peanut butter is prepared from unblanched peanuts, the name shall show that fact by some such statement as “prepared from unblanched peanuts (skins left on) and such statement shall be printed in letters big enough to be seen under customary conditions of purchase or use and shall immediately proceed or follow the words “peanut butter” without intervening written, printed or graphic matter.
  • The label of peanut butter shall name, by their common names, the optional ingredients used. If hydrogenated vegetable oil is used, the label statement of optional ingredients shall include the words “hydrogenated ___________ oil” or “hardened oil”, the blank being filled in either with the names of the vegetable sources of the oil alternately with the word “vegetable” for example “hydrogenated peanut oil” or “hardened peanut and cottonseed oils” or “hydrogenated vegetable oil.”

This regulation shall take effect thirty (30) days after publication in the Official Gazette.

ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER
No. 228 s. 1974
Recommended by:
(Sgd) L.M. PESIGAN
Food and Drug Administrator
(Sgd) CLEMENTE S. GATMAITAN, M.D. M.P.H.
Acting Secretary of Health

How to Make Peanut Brittle

peanut-brittle

Procure the ingredients you need.

2 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups raw peanut
1 cup water
1 cup light corn syrup
2 cups sugar

peanut-brittle

Brown sugar or muscovado is recommended due to health reasons.

The procedures.
1. Line the baking sheet  with aluminum foil and spray with non stick cooking spray.
2. Mix the sugar and water in saucepan . Add the corn syrup and salt when the sugar is moistened.
3. Cook over medium heat until it reaches 225 degrees  on a candy thermometer  or until it starts bubbling . Mix the peanuts . Cook until 290 degrees.
4. Turn off the heat and mix the butter. Mix well and pour into baking pan.
5. Spread thinly and uniformly with spoon and cool at room temperature. Break or cut into small pieces.
6. Pack in air tight container and seal.

How to Make LESS-GREASE PEANUT

Materials
shelled peanuts – 1 kg
cooking oil – ½ liter
refined salt – ½ tsp.
garlic powder – ¼ tsp.

Equipment
measuring cups
measuring spoons
carajay
ladle
colander
basin
stove
weighing scale

Procedures
1.    Soak the peanuts in boiled water for 5-10 minutes.
2.    Take out from boiled water and place peanuts in basin with tap water. Remove peanut skin.
3.    Sun dry the peanuts for 2 days (at least 12 hours).
4.    Deep fry in hot cooking oil,150ºC, for 2-3 minutes.
5.    Place in cheesecloth to excess remove oil. Cool and sprinkle with refined salt and garlic powder.
6.    Pack in clean jars or .003 PP/PE bags.
7.    Seal and store.

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Some vendors are selling roasted peanuts. They are emphasizing that their product is not deep-fried in oil, roasted instead. Roasted is the real less grease peanut, no sinful cooking oil added. I have never tried it yet however.

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Update as of May 7, 2012.  I made a new version of less-grease peanut recipe, the pan roasted peanuts. See it after pressing the link.