There are only a couple of things my family can't go without: Milk, TP, apples, bananas, and, of course Peanut Butter. We all enjoy a good PBJ with cold milk, and who hasn't made good old-fashioned Ants on a Log?
I got to participate in an online tasting party, sponsored by Jif (a Mom Central client). To prepare, they sent a nice box of goodies to a couple of us here, and to a dozen or so Mom Bloggers we work with. The bag they sent included several flavors of Jif Peanut Butter, along with some things to try a few new ways to enjoy it. They also gave us a $25 gift card for Walmart, so we could buy fresh fruit and veggies.
Not sure what an Online Panel looks like? By using UStream.tv, Jif was able to broadcast directly from their test kitchen, while we participated right along by trying out the things they showed us, and asking questions and getting responses in real-time. Kind of a personalized Cooking Channel, just for the few of us participating. Everyone had a blast, had a few surprises, and got to know each other, along with the folks at Jif. We all especially enjoyed meeting Sara Donavan, and our MC Cody.
And for the record, I had my eyes opened to the awesome possibilities of the crunchy combination of Jif and bacon.
For my part, I had a few PB and somethings yesterday. For lunch, I debated how to keep the carbs low, while still eating a sandwich. Patrick introduced me to the idea of carving out most of the bread from a bagel, and filling it. In my case, I stuffed the chewy shell with Crunchy Jif, and sliced up a kiwi to sweeten it. Yum.
During the tasting, I tried carrots, brocolli (really good!), animal crackers, pita chips, pretzels, teddy grahams, grapes, and for fun, cottage cheese. Before working out, I mixed up a chocolate Muscle Milk shake, adding in a couple of tablespoons of Jif. Talk about a dose of protein, with a creamy, chocolaty, peanut buttery taste. Mmmmmm.
My daughter Emily especially likes Peanut Butter. She'll take a big spoon, dip it in, and eat it like a lollypop. And Alyssa likes spreading it on warm toast with a little honey. She told me that just the other day, she ordered a PBJ shake at Emerald City Smoothy, where they added peanut butter and grape jelly to a protein shake. Sounds pretty good to me.
A few things that I didn't know were talked about during the webcast:
- More creamy peanut butter is sold nationwide by Jif than crunchy: 80% to 20%. Wow. I'm such a huge fan of crunchy, that was hard to believe.
- It takes 1,218 peanuts to make a 28 oz jar of Jif.
- Jif has an unrefrigerated shelf life of 3 months. Unopened, it will last up to two years. Though most of the moms and dads participating never have a jar last that long.
- Jif's new Omega 3 has some interesting ingredients, but tastes really good. I was pleasently surprised, and will probably make this my favorite brand to keep on the shelf. Though I might have to mix it with crunchy every now and then.
- Jif's Peanut Butter with Honey ROCKS.
Jif has posted lots of recipes on their website, with sandwiches, sauces, desserts, main dish ideas, and more. And a lot of them included bacon. I've always wondered how to make a good thai peanut sauce. They showed us how, so I'm going to try that this weekend. A great way to get a little more protein along with chicken (or bacon).
My favorite idea was mixing in a ziplock baggie a a spoonful of Jif with a spoonful of vanilla frosting, adding a little cinnamon. Take some scissors, snip the end of the bag, and use it to squeeze the frosting onto cookies or crackers. My kids loved that idea.
Finally, they announced the Most Creative Peanut Butter Sandwich Contest for kids 6-12, to submit their recipes to Jif. The winner gets a $25,000 scholarship, and all finalists get a trip to NYC, and a $2500 scholarship. So get out your jars of peanut butter, and get a little creative! And while supplies last, if you enter by Sept 10, you'll get a Jif to Go Back to School Pack. So get your entries in!