By Maryann at Balanced Nutrition YYC
I'm always looking for an excuse to eat peanut butter. Whether it be a slather of it on a slice of gluten free bread, a shmear of it on banana chunks or apple slices for a delicious snack, or with chocolate! I mean who doesn't like peanut butter and chocolate?!?
Now I know that there are some out there with severe allergies to this legume (peanuts are not actually a nut), so I do sympathize with them. However, maybe a peanut butter alternative (Like WOW butter) could be used :)
Now a little background on the elusive legume shall we...
Peanuts, along with beans and peas, belong to the single plant family, Leguminosae. Legumes are edible seeds enclosed in pods. As a group, they provide the best source of concentrated protein in the plant kingdom. While their physical structure and nutritional benefits more closely resemble that of other legumes, their use in diets and cuisines more closely resembles that of nuts.
Peanut seeds (kernels) grow into a green oval-leafed plant about 18 inches tall, which develop delicate yellow flowers around the lower portion of the plant. The flowers pollinate themselves and then lose their petals as the fertilized ovary begins to enlarge. The budding ovary or 'peg' grows down away from the plant, extending to the soil. The peanut embryo turns horizontal to the soil surface and begins to mature, taking the form of the peanut. From planting to harvesting, the growing cycle takes four to five months, depending on the type or variety.
In the U.S., peanuts and peanut butter are the most popular nut choice and comprise 67% of all nut consumption.
So let's get to that recipe with Peanut Butter and Chocolate
Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie Bowl
1 Cup unsweetened nut milk ( I use creamy cashew)
1/2 cup no sugar added coconut water (full of electrolytes and great for post workout!)
1 banana frozen (I cut my banana in chunks and freeze them in snack baggies. This is the trick to a creamy smoothie or smoothie bowl)
1/4 cup avocado ( I buy my frozen. YES they come frozen now! Whoda thunk?!? Plus this is a great way to get some healthy fats in)
1 Scoop Epicure Vegan Protein
1 Scoop Cocoa Acai Smoothie Booster
1 tbsp Chia Seed
1 Tbsp Hemp Hearts (I use Manitoba Harvest)
1 Tbsp Natural Peanut Butter
Blend well and pour in bowl. Top with some chocolate covered coconut, pumpkin seeds and cocao nibs! Sit back and enjoy :)
Peanut information from http://www.peanut-institute.org/peanut-facts/
Certified Holistic Nutrition and Wellbeing Counselor