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Go nuts: It's National Peanut Butter Day and here are the 5 most delicious ways to celebrate

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Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, Monster PBJ's Cinnamonster Raisin Nut Butter
Monster PBJ's Cinnamonster raisin nut butter Photo courtesy of Monster PBJ
Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, BRC GastroPub's Peanut Butter, Banana and Marshmallow French Toast with Warm Maple Syrup and Doubled Cream
BRC GastroPub's peanut butter, banana and marshmallow French toast with warm maple syrup and doubled cream Photo courtesy of BRC Gastropub
Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, Tacos A Go-Go, Chocolate Peanut Butter Dessert Tacos
Chocolate peanut butter dessert tacos at Tacos A Go-Go Photo courtesy of Tacos A Go-Go
Layne Lynch, peanut butter and jelly shots, January 2013, El Gran Malo
Peanut butter and jelly shots at El Gran Malo Photo courtesy of El Gran Malo
Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, Uchi Houston's Peanut Butter Semifreddo
Uchi Houston's peanut butter semifreddo Photo courtesy of Uchi Houston
Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, Monster PBJ's Cinnamonster Raisin Nut Butter
Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, BRC GastroPub's Peanut Butter, Banana and Marshmallow French Toast with Warm Maple Syrup and Doubled Cream
Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, Tacos A Go-Go, Chocolate Peanut Butter Dessert Tacos
Layne Lynch, peanut butter and jelly shots, January 2013, El Gran Malo
Layne Lynch, peanut butter, January 2013, Uchi Houston's Peanut Butter Semifreddo

Smooth, chunky, natural, swirled with jelly. No matter how you prefer your peanut butter, there's no denying this nutty concoction is a timeless American food. In fact, children and adults alike can't help but beam with delight after indulging in this savory, sweet spread. 

Thursday (Jan. 24) is National Peanut Butter Day, and what better way to celebrate this humble treat than by sampling it all around the city? 

In honor of National Peanut Butter Day, we’ve rounded up peanut butter-inspired dishes from Uchi, El Gran Malo, Monster PBJ, BRC GastroPub and Tacos A Go-Go. Know of any other delicious PB treats we can find around H-Town? Leave a comment and let us know where we can track them down! 

Monster PBJ 
Check website for truck's daily location.

Cinnamonster Raisin Nut Butter

"Since we make peanut, cashew, and almond butter almost every day, we are always experimenting with new concoctions. We have office competitions to try and make the tastiest vegan, gluten-free, nutritious nut butter treats. This recipe was the winner of a recent competition. It's delicious on toast, English muffins, pancakes, waffles, graham crackers, sliced apples and ice cream; believe me, we've tried them all.

"The apple butter really lightens up the peanut butter and, along with the cinnamon, fills this dish with delightful flavors. We haven't added this to the Monster PBJ menu, but may do so in the future." - Jill Butler, owner of Monster PBJ.

1 cup apple butter
2 cups roasted, unsalted peanuts (or 1 cup pre-made peanut butter)
1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup peanuts (optional)

Put the apple butter and peanuts into a food processor and process until smooth and creamy. Depending on the power of your processor, this may take a few minutes. Add remaining ingredients, except the extra peanuts and raisins, and process until smooth. Once the mixture is smooth, stop the food processor and add the raisins. If you like chunky nut butter, add the extra peanuts as well. Pulse the mixture a few times until peanut butter is still chunky but mixed well. This peanut butter should keep for two to four weeks in an airtight container in the fridge.

Uchi Houston
904 Westheimer Road

Peanut Butter Semifreddo
4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 tablespoon vanilla extract

Golden Raisin Purée
1 1/4 cups golden raisins
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sake
1/2 cup mirin
1/2 teaspoon salt

Apple Miso Sorbet
1 cup Fuji apple
2 ounces miso
1/2 cup water
2 cups simple syrup
1 teaspoon salt

For the Peanut Butter Semifreddo: Whip cold heavy cream, salt, and vanilla to soft peaks. Reserve and chill. In a mixer, combine cream cheese, peanut butter and sugar. Mix until mixture reaches smooth consistency. Add half the reserved whipped cream. Mix well, being careful not to overmix. Transfer mixture to a large mixing bowl. Gently fold remaining whipped cream into mixture. Pour mixture into plastic wrap-lined terrine mold. Freeze for a minimum of 4 hours. 

For the Golden Raisin Purée: Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil and turn off heat. Let raisins sit in the pan for 30 minutes to rehydrate. Blend all ingredients in a blender to form a smooth purée. Refrigerate and put in a squeeze bottle for service. Reserve what is left in an airtight container.

For the Apple Miso Sorbet: In a blender, purée six large Fuji apples, cored and seeded. Do not peel apples. Combine 1 cup of apple purée with 2 ounces of miso paste. Add simple syrup, water, and salt. Chill the mixture and freeze in an ice cream machine according to manufacturer’s directions.

Peanut Butter Semifreddo Assembly: Half an hour before serving, remove terrine from freezer. With a hot knife, slice into desired serving sizes, about 3/4-inch thick. Place individual slices on serving plates and refrigerate so that the temperature of the semifreddo rises. The goal is to have a partially frozen center with a creamy soft outside. When ready to serve, scoop a liberal serving of apple and miso sorbet next to the semifreddo and finish with the golden raisin purée. At Uchi, we also garnish with ground peanut brittle and dehydrated apple slices.

Tacos A Go-Go 
3704 Main St., 2912 White Oak Dr. 

Chocolate/Peanut Butter Dessert Taco

"When we opened Tacos A Go-Go nearly seven years ago, we were not thrilled with our desserts. While flan, sopapillas and tres leches are tasty, where's the chocolate?! So, we brainstormed our way to France and decided to do a Texas version of the crepe. We take a warm flour tortilla, fill it with chocolate and peanut butter (think Reese's Peanut Butter) and put it on the grill for a minute or two like a quesadilla. The chocolate melts, the tortilla softens, and the result is a gooey, yummy dessert." - Sharon Haynes, owner of Tacos A Go-Go.

BRC GastroPub
519 Shepherd Dr. 

Peanut Butter, Banana & Marshmallow French Toast with Warm Maple Syrup and Doubled Cream

"The inspiration behind this dish came from a sandwich I saw a kid at my daughter's school eating one day. My daughter loves French toast, so I put the two concepts together in my mind. I went to BRC GastroPub right after dropping her off at school and tested this dish.

"The waiters loved it from the very first test. I think it's simple and comforting, and my issue with pancakes and French toast is I'm usually bored after the first few bites; they're basically just cooked batter and syrup. With these other ingredients, you get changes in the textures and flavors bite after bite." - Lance Fegen, executive chef and proprietor of Liberty Kitchen & Oyster Bar and BRC GastroPub.

8 slices Texas toast-style, milk, or challah bread
6 eggs, whisked
1 1/2 cups cream or half & half
2 teaspoons sugar or agave syrup
pinch of salt
peanut butter
bananas, sliced
mini marshmallows
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons coconut oil or vegetable oil

Whisk eggs slightly. Add cream, sugar, and salt. Stir well in a large bowl or baking dish. Prepare each of the bread slices with a nice spread of peanut butter. Add a layer of sliced banana to four of the bread slices. On the other four slices, sprinkle on the mini marshmallows. Place slices together to form a sandwich. Place the sandwiches in the custard for four minutes, turning over and soaking for another four minutes. In a large sauté pan over medium heat, add half the butter and oil. Cooking in two batches, fry the sandwiches for about two minutes on each side. You may need to finish these in the oven if you want the inside melted well. Serve with warm maple syrup and whipped cream.

El Gran Malo
2307 Ella Blvd. 

Peanut Butter & Jelly Shots

Steve Sharma, owner of El Gran Malo, heard Grant Achatz of Next and Aviary speak at a formal, childhood-inspired feast, and the dinner's theme was the sixth sense (memory or intuition). Sharma realized this idea of food nostalgia could be applied to spirits as well and was inspired to make a unique peanut butter drink.

The Peanut Butter & Jelly Shot at El Gran Malo actually had a predecessor called the Peanut Butter & Jelly Flip. A flip is a beer cocktail that's fortified with a spirit and served with raw egg. Sharma decided to use two tequila infusions for his new peanut butter drink: strawberry tequila and peanut butter tequila. The peanut butter tequila is actually made with house-roasted peanuts and a touch of salt.

The Peanut Butter & Jelly Shot features two garnishes: white Wonder Bread cut into a circle and deep fried, or a toasted crust that's placed on the rim of the glass. The Peanut Butter & Jelly Shot has one slight modification from the Peanut Butter & Jelly Flip as well. The "jelly" portion of the drink has the same strawberry-infused tequila as the Flip, but it has a little fresh strawberry and agave nectar added to it. This addition makes the drink taste more like a sweet jam or preserve. 

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