Peanut butter and jelly (or jam as us Brits call it) is a childhood favourite, but for me, this obsession has continued. The salty crunch of the peanut butter contrasted with the sweetness of the jam is a combination like no other.
Fodmappers have to be careful of what peanut butters and jams we choose to eat as many contain fructose, trans fats and other FODMAP-filled ingredients, particularly with the more processed varieties. It’s often hard to tell from the label exactly what the ingredients are, so I thought it was time I made my own. It turned out to be much easier and cheaper than I expected, it tasted great and the health benefits are numerous.
Blueberry and Raspberry Chia Seed Jam
- 1 cup of raspberries
- ½ cup of blueberries
- 2 tbsp of chia seeds
- 1 tbsp of maple syrup
- ½ tbsp of vanilla extract
I chose to use raspberries and blueberries, following the advice on the NHS website that if you are to change anything about your diet, it should be to add blueberries – they are one of the almighty superfoods after all. This recipe would work with whatever berries take your fancy and what’s really great is that you can use berries that are slightly past their prime, meaning they don’t go to waste – so long as they’re not mouldy.
I then measured out my chia seeds. If you thought blueberries were good for you, wait until you try chia seeds – they have recently been recognised as superior among the superfoods. Loaded with antioxidants, full of protein and free from calories – who knew such tiny little things could bring so much goodness. The only downside is that they’re pretty expensive and a nightmare to find – I recommend buying them online in advance. Nevertheless, chia seeds are vital to this recipe as they create the jelly like texture needed for jam. This means, unlike many jams, we don’t have to rely on refined sugar to thicken the mixture.
So, start by adding the fruit to a pan over a medium heat. Once the berries warm up, they’ll begin to burst open. Gently stir and mash them with a spatula. If necessary, add a drop of water to help speed up the process. After about 5 minutes, you’ll see a vibrant liquid consistency forming.
Add the vanilla extract and maple syrup for a sweeter flavour.
Then add the chia seeds and heat for a couple more minutes, stirring them into the mixture.
Leave to cool and watch your ‘fruit compote’ magically thicken into jam. Once it reaches room temperature, put in an airtight container and store in the fridge where the jam with continue to thicken.
Once fully set, I slathered my jam onto gluten free oatcakes and topped with banana. The jam is so good you are likely to end up scooping it straight out the jar!
- 2 cups unsalted peanuts
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp maple syrup (optional)
- 1 tbsp cinnamon (optional)
- A pinch of salt
You won’t believe how easy it is to make your own peanut butter.
Start by measuring two cups of peanuts. I’d recommend shelled, unsalted peanuts. Learn from my mistake of buying monkey nuts to then spend a good hour cracking them open.
Add the peanuts to a food processor. I use this one.
Add two tablespoons of vegetable oil, a pinch of salt and blend away!
The key to this recipe is patience. After about one minute your peanuts will have broken down.
After a few more minutes the peanuts will become much more finely chopped. They’ll then begin to clump together and form this couscous-like texture. Keep scooping the peanuts down from the side of the processor. I then added maple syrup and cinnamon for extra flavour.
As time passes you will begin to think that it’s not going to happen. You will consider giving up and cracking open the Skippy. You may even consider adding extra ingredients – the first time I attempted this I added water in a moment of weakness and it all went wrong from there. Stick with it – it will happen!
Then out of nowhere this perfectly smooth and creamy peanut butter texture forms and all your doubts are proven wrong! This moment is extremely satisfying.
It really is that simple!
I could honestly recommend eating this homemade peanut butter with just about anything (I’m a bit peanut butter obsessed) but my favourite, albeit slightly unusual, peanut butter combinations are:
- Peanut butter and celery (the perfect snack)
- Peanut butter and bananas (a classic)
- Peanut butter and cheddar cheese (trust me on this one)
Let me know what you think!
What time is it?
Go nuts and enjoy!