What is peanut butter?
Peanut butter is a food spread or paste consisting of dry roasted peanuts. Those are ground peanuts with other ingredients that enhance the texture and taste such as sugars, salt, and emulsifiers added.
Peanut butter dates back to the Aztec times. They mashed peanuts and roasted into a substance like a paste. Many people have been mistakenly credited with inventing peanut butter. George Washington Carver, who discovered over 300 various usage of the peanut is not the real inventor of peanut butter. Even though many people still believe he is the creator of peanut butter that’s not true.
“Three doctors” is the true answer for the “Who invented peanut butter” question.
In 1884 a Canadian doctor Marcellus Gilmore Edson patented a peanut paste which was made from roasted and milled peanuts.
Then in 1885 Dr. John Harvey Kellogg (the man who is the founder of Kellogg’s cereals) patented a different process which created peanut butter from the raw peanut. He came up with this process originally as a protein substitute for the patients in his Western Health Reform institute. This peanut butter was created for the patients who had difficulties with chewing.
In 1903 Dr. Ambrose Straub of Missouri patented a machine to make peanut butter. Finally, in 1922 Joseph Rosefield a chemist, founded a process for making smooth peanut butter. Before this discovery, peanut butter had to be strenuously stirred before serving. He licensed this process to the company that sold Peter Pan peanut butter. Then in 1932 he began his own peanut butter company which he named as Skippy.
Under the Skippy brand, Rosefield found a new method to churn creamy peanut butter thus giving it a smoother consistency.
Besides being spread on various breads, crackers, and of course the peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Peanut butter is an addition to many candies, pastries, and deserts. Peanut butter is a staple in granolas and even military meals.
How is peanut butter made nowadays.
Harvested peanuts are shelled at a plant, removing the debris. The peanuts are roasted in hot air lightly browning them. Then suction fans suck the hot air away from the peanuts, cooling them to room temperature. The peanuts are then blanched, removing the skin and bitter “heart”. The peanuts are then dropped into a grinder where they become a thick paste. The peanut paste is heated to 60 degrees Celsius to be mixed with other ingredients, then cooled to 36° Celsius to be jarred.
Interesting facts about peanut butter:
- Januarary 24th is National Peanut Butter day in the United States.
- In the United States, any product labeled peanut butter must contain at least 90% peanuts.
- It takes approximately 540 peanuts to make a 12 oz. jar.
- Strawberry jam is the favorite to go in a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and most prefer the crust on their sandwich.
- Goober, slang for peanut originates from the Congo name for peanut, nguba.
- Each American consumes over two pounds of peanut butter a year.
- Among it’s non food uses peanut butter gets gum out of hair, works well in mouse traps and it is perfect to put a dog‘s medicine in if they won’t take the medicine otherwise.