I was an accidental peanut farmer. The duration of that avocation was a single season.
Let me explain.
My drive to work passes a farm whose owner often places bags of horse manure near the road’s edge. These bags are available for the taking and, since a free and natural fertilizer is attractive to me, I threw a bag into the back of my car and drove away. The compost was not finely textured, but the chunks of hay did not bother me.
Unbeknownst to me, however, some whole peanuts were scattered among those miniature haystacks in the compost. Mysterious green leafy plants soon sprouted alongside the flowers in the boxes on my deck.
Why not just remove the small peanut plant rather than waiting for it to become large and leafy? Asking that question is a sure sign that your thumbs are greener than mine. I am not a gardener. I cannot distinguish between a desired flower and another plant until both are in bloom. So the mystery plant was left to grow until it was obvious that one thing in those containers was not like the others.
While the number of peanuts produced in my flower boxes exceeded the number of peas I was able to coax from the soil, my harvest was for the birds. Literally. It was the blue jays who ate the peanuts.
My farming days are over. That’s a good thing.
Overalls do not flatter me and are, generally, a fashion mistake.
The peanut story had to be told now. National Peanut Butter Cookie Day is just around the corner, and there is only one way to celebrate. By baking peanut butter cookies. Luckily, for most of us, the weather is still cool enough that the oven will not heat up the house. Raw sugar and natural peanut butter combine to create a great cookie. I have made the cookies with the traditional white sugar and they were neither good nor bad. Then I used the raw sugar in a batch of peanut butter cookies and the heavens opened, golden rays of light streamed into the kitchen, and the angels sang. Hallelujah! A secret had been delivered unto me.
As for the natural peanut butter, I don’t remember when I incorporated it into the cookies, but I think the presence of natural peanut oil and the absence of other ingredients helps to increase the flavor of the peanut butter. That is my not-tested-by-science theory.
Eat peanut butter cookies fresh from the oven. Or, at the latest, the next day.
Here is my recipe for peanut butter cookies. Enjoy.