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Peanuts – October 2009

Piko has been making peanut butter for many years. In the last 5 years we have used only certified organic peanuts. We roast them and grind them up in our state of the art peanut butter making machine -without adding anything else. The nut butter is fresh, tasty, nutritious and economical. We package it into multi-purpose food grade jars and encourage you to return the jar when empty for reuse.

Peanut plants were discovered in the Andean lowlands of South America. Archaeologists claim that excavations from burial sites in Peru dating back to 3000 BC were covered with peanut shells.
Peanuts and peanut products became common in North American households in the early 1900s. Dr George Washington Carver developed over 100 diverse uses for peanuts in products like detergents, salves, shoe & metal polishes, shaving & face cream, soap, paint, shampoo, axle grease, ink and medicine.

The peanut plant flowers above the ground, but fruits underground. The peanut is a legume or nitrogen-fixing plant. Its roots form nodules that absorb nitrogen from the air and enrich the soil.
More than 75% of total peanut fat is unsaturated. They are 25% protein, with high levels of the amino acid arginine, plant sterols, tryptophan and other phytochemicals which may have cardio-protective and cancer inhibiting properties.

Peanuts contain zinc, magnesium, copper, seleniumcontain, B-vitamins, folate and Vitamin E. Peanuts are natural sources of soluble and insoluble fibre (non-starch polysaccharides). They are low on the Glycemic index (i.e. do not affect blood sugar levels very much) and are moderately acid forming.

Piko peanuts are organic ECO-Cert certified from China. Ceres import the peanuts from a farm certified to European organic standards. The farm is visited each year to ensure the workers and environment are healthy and honestly applying their organic policies. The packaging and shipping companies are also visited to ensure high standards before sending the peanuts to us. A bulletin about the Ceres visits to the Chinese peanut farm is available for you to read at Piko. It describes the area where the peanuts are grown and how they have been strictly organic since the 1950s.
We have both blanched (runner peanuts without skin) and red skin peanut butters in smooth and crunchy. Blanched peanuts make an creamier butter than the red skin peanuts, which have a higher nutritional value. Smooth peanut butter is creamier than crunchy.
At Piko, we roast the organic peanuts in our own tumble roaster, cool them, then grind them in our famous Vince Russels peanut butter mill. They are bottled and labelled and put straight on the shelf. The peanut butter is best used within 6 months of the packing date in the top right corner of the label.

Peanuts are generally warming. They have a sweet flavour and lubricate the intestines and harmonise the stomach. They can slow the metabolic rate of the liver and cause skin outbreaks. They should be avoided by people who are overweight or have a lot of damp in their system or sluggishness and by people who have cancer.

Non organic peanut plants are heavily sprayed with chemicals, pesticides and fungicides as they are grown in large monoculture crops and require rich fertile soil for a good yield. In non organic commercial peanut butters preservatives, sugar and salt are usually added as well as hydrogenated vegetable oil as a stabilizer.

Some people are seriously allergic to peanuts and can die from anaphylactic shock if exposed to them. They are often diagnosed as children and do not out grow the allergy. It is recommended that pregnant women do not eat peanuts in the third trimester to lower the risk of peanut allergy developing in the fetus.

The drug industry is working on medications to reduce anaphylaxis from peanuts. There is a lot of testing on animals to develop effective medication and a proposal to engineer peanut plants to reduce allergenicity. See Allergy Today Magazine Autunm edition 2009 or for more information about peanut allergies.

Piko Peanut Butter Recipes

Nut Burgers

2 onions finely chopped
3 stalks silverbeet chopped (leaf and stalk separated)
Oil to sauté (sunflower or rice bran is best)
2t dill seeds
3T tamari
1 ½c cooked short grain brown rice
400g soft tofu
2t oregano
4t tomato puree
3c Piko Crunchy with Skin peanut butter
Preheat oven to 180°C.
Saute onion and silverbeet stalk together in a pan. Add the dill seeds to cook just a few minutes before taking off the heat, stir frequently. Add leaf part of the silverbeet and cover. (You can substitute onion for 3 extra silverbeet stalks and a dash of Hing).
Mix together the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Add the onions to the bowl and mix thoroughly
Form into patties the size of your palm. Use your hands to form the patties, you can use oil on them to stop the mixture from sticking too much.
Bake for 45 mins.
Serve in Purebread Vintage Milled buns with Orange Kale salad and Kaitaia Fire hot sauce!

Rye Cereal

1c kibbled rye
2½c water
½c Piko Smooth with Skin peanut butter
¼t sea salt
¼c organic raisins
1T molasses
2T organic wheat germ meal
Bring water to the boil in a medium sized pan. Slowly add the rye and bring the temperature up to boiling again. Add nuts, salt, raisins. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer of 30 minutes. Take off the heat and add molasses and wheatgerm meal and stir well.
Serve warm to the whole family on a frosty morning.

Peanut Dressing

In a food processor, blend together ½c sunflower oil, 4 cloves of garlic, 1 small onion finely chopped, ¼c Whymor apple cider vinegar, 1t sea salt, ½ can chopped tomatoes.
Add a bunch of fresh parsley and 2c Piko Smooth Blanched peanut butter. Blend again for a few minutes. Add water to thin if desired.
Serve with salads, on burgers or use as a dipping sauce.

Peanut Sauce

Mix together 1c hulled tahini and 1c Piko Crunchy Blanched peanut butter. Add 1T tomato paste, freshly cracked black pepper and 1t oregano. Heat gently in a pan and serve.
Can be served as a dipping sauce with raw carrot and swede sticks at your next potluck.

Other ways to use Piko Peanut Butter

Add to soups to enrich the nutrition, texture and flavour
Add to porridge as a variation
Peanut butter sandwiches with vege spread and alfafa sprouts
Use as a substitute for cheese (on crackers, on pizza, on pasta, toasted sandwiches)
Spread onto fresh apple or pear slices
Mash with banana and a sprinkle of cinnamon on toast
Mix with organic borage honey and carob powder-serve as small balls dusted with fine coconut as a decadent desert
Add to vanilla ice cream in the freezer for a summer treat

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