Goin’ nuts over peanuts-A A +A
Thursday, September 20, 2012
FOR so long a time, peanuts have been a part of our regular diet. Meaning, we have been eating and enjoying them since the time we can remember.
Be it salty, sweet, spicy, soft, crunchy or creamy, I am pretty sure we had our share of this nuts in a variety of ways. Remember when we use to buy (and even until now) peanuts along the sidewalks? They come in fried, garlicky, salty and even sugar-coated. And at a small brown paper bag of about a tablespoon or two would cost us P5 nowadays!
Now that we have an assortment of spices available in the market, we can come up with a variety of peanuts at our fingertips! Chili? Barbeque? Wasabi? Cheesy? And the list goes on. It’s really almost endless! Boiled peanuts, anyone?
Pinoy as we are, and having the inherent talent of coming up with different ways of preparing peanuts, we have an almost infinite and limitless technique and method in concocting and formulating new recipes thereby giving a different flair and taste to this popular legume.
I am definitely a lover for “peanut turon,” a caramel-glazed lumpia-wrapped chopped peanuts that’s crunchy and definitely delicious!
What about our very famous “peanut kisses” from Bohol? After one bite, the contents of the entire box would be gone like magic! And who can forget “majareal”?
Another peanut based delicacy from the Vizayas region.
I am sure other countries would have their version of the popular peanut dessert like “peanut brittle” which we locally call “piniato.” What probably made our version different is the use of honey, although some would use maple syrup, like in North America.
Turrones de Mani (which is really peanut turon) but made with melt-in-your-mouth wafer is another “to die for” munchies! And the very famous turrones I can remember would be that of La Salud de Turrones of Mambajao, Camiguin which dates back to the early 1900’s and still using the original recipe at that! They definitely use Camiguin Honey in the process which made them truly unique and delectable.
What about deep dark chocolate-coated peanuts? Chocolate-coated caramel peanuts? Fruit and nut clusters? Be it white, dark or milk, I would sure gobble them up before anyone else! How about that? Chocolate-covered ice cream sprinkled with peanuts is another winner!
Peanuts give that crunch and bite to brownies, cakes, cupcakes and breads. Either topped or mixed in the batter, this is a sure way to make one ask for more. We also what have we call as “peanut bread,” which some bakeries still offer. Some have the filled sweetened crushed peanuts inside the bun while some have them outside the bread, coating it all over.
How can we forget the classic and standard peanut butter? So creamy that it sticks into our teeth and mouth. And now it comes in an assortment of selection: plain peanut butter, chunky peanut butter (which I adore the most), peanut and jelly swirl, peanut and chocolate swirl. But the one that I can always relate to is the very Pinoy, kind of home-made brand, Lily’s! I definitely grew up with this.
Chinese delicacies use a lot of peanuts too in their dishes and desserts. Cold peanut soup is worth a try. Really awesome. Stir-fried chicken, pork or beef with peanuts. “Kiam pong,” Chinese fried rice with peanuts.
Another Chinese origin but has entered into our culinary world is “masi,” sweetened mashed peanuts covered with a chewy glutinous flour dough.
Chicken Satay is another delightful dish that is Asian in origin. And it goes very well with steamed rice. Aren’t we served with peanuts before meals in some restaurants? We even munch on peanuts while watching a movie or a TV show.
Having it as a “pulutan” over a bottle of beer or even soda together with some other crunchy snacks items makes the conversation so much better! Agree?
So, can we definitely say that peanuts play an important part of our lives? Grab some today and delight yourself in it!
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on September 20, 2012.