Thursday, February 01, 2007

The Perfect Meld

No, I'm not crazy, but this is about as good as it gets when you mix Atlanta and Hannover!

Peanut butter is to America what Nutella is to Europe. Peanuts vs. hazelnuts.

Wiki says: "Peanut butter provides protection against cardiovascular disease due to high levels of monounsaturated fats and Resveratrol. An excellent source of protein, and vitamins B3 and E, peanuts also contain magnesium, folate, dietary fiber and arginine. Peanuts also contain high levels of an antioxidant called p-coumaric acid." (And as we all know, many people are sadly allergic to it!)

Nutella, on the other hand, is more like frosting on the cake! While also made with nuts (hazelnuts), the peanut oil goes through a hot-solvent extraction process which takes out all the proteins, so you are left with pure peanut oil which is generally non-allergenic. The cocoa added is what gives it a chocolatey appearance.

Did I tell you that the peanut butter jars here in Hannover are so small (8 oz.) that we bring over our own 40 oz. (2.5 lb) jars!

The first ingredient of peanut butter is peanuts. The first ingredient of Nutella is sugar. So think peanut butter and jelly! Put these two together on incredible German bread and Voila! The perfect meld of America and Europe...or Atlanta and Hannover.

Yup, that's what I had for lunch yesterday! As I often say, it doesn't take much to make me happy. :)


  1. I'm not into chocolate, but my family are HUGE Nutella fans :) That bread, my downfall, looks scrumptious!!

  2. For me, a spoonful of Nutella and a spoonful of peanut butter eaten at the same time (yes, I have a big mouth!) almost equal a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup. :-)

    I'm always surprised how many Germans either don't know about or dislike peanut butter. Mr M thinks it's awful, but at least my kids love it.

  3. I am a PB fanatic. I just realized today how much I rely on PB when making snacks for the girls I work with at a middle school. One girl dislikes PB but it's in all my recipes. I thinks it's the most versatile and delicious food out there. Never get tired of it. Must be why my "good" is so high. Now if I could get rid of all the bad.

  4. I can buy Nutella here in Canada, my kids loved it! And I never really took to peanut butter when I first came to live here, but now, peanut butter on rye toast, and a nice cuppa coffee in the morning, oh YUM!

  5. DW: Not into chocolate??? What's wrong with you, woman!!! Sounds like your family makes up for you. :)

    There's nothing like German bread! At the German restaurant in Atlanta the other day, when we were served French-like bread, I told my friend that I was really disappointed we didn't get the kind of bread I'm used to!

    Christina: Hmm. Didin't know Germans weren't into PB. Maybe that explains why their jars are so small?!

    Your spoonful of it (and Nutella) reminded me of an image I have of my dad. From time to time his snack would be a spoonful of PB from the cupboard.

    Susan D: I was so glad when they started making "reduced fat" PB awhile back. Made me feel like I could eat it anytime! Actually, I didn't realize it was as good for us as the text says. Not bad. Anyway, so glad there's a good fall-back like that, especially for your middle-school girls.

    Ex-S: Yup. Exactly. When all else fails, there's PB!

  6. I think you're right about the small PB jars in Germany. It hasn't come through in Switzerland, either. In Holland however, it is very popular - probably because of the high Asian population.

  7. I knew a woman who was a youngster during WWII in an eastern European country, Hungary I think. After the war, the US sent rations to her town and every month or so they got a box full of supplies. Among the rest was a jar of peanut butter. The first time her mother opened the jar (not able to read English), smelled it, tasted it, and found it so repulsive that she assumed it was a cleanser of some sort. She used it as a polisher/scrub till the rations stoped coming. When this little girl, as a woman, came to the United States, she still thought peanut butter was for cleaning till an American friend told her otherwise, to her complete shock! She brought up her American born children deprived of peanut butter, who now as adults can't get enough of it. This woman, in her 60s still will not eat peanut butter. True story. :)

    Personally, I love nutella a little better than peanut butter - it's the chocolate that puts it ahead. Combined, I agree with Christina that it's almost as good as a Reeses. Almost.

  8. Ginnie - Germany and Switzerland hate Peanut butter. It's my favorite thing, which I eat almost daily. When I asked where to get it the first time, my friend looked at me in shock. It was really funny!

    And the nutella - I love those tiny jars. It's better so you don't eat as much. Nutella is so addictive so I try not to buy it anymore... Having said that, your sandwich looks incredible. I might have to go get some today! Smallest size please!


  9. CS: I remember when the Nutella jars in the States were very small. You can now buy the big ones. So, hmm, maybe there's hope for Germany and PB size?!

    Mad: That's an amazing story!! Who would ever think that could be true!!

    You and Christina are both right about the combination of the two: PERFECT. (But then, I really like Reeses!)

    ET: I'm actually getting my education! I had no idea ANYBODY, let alone a whole country, hated PB. I know that some are allergic to it, but HATE it? No way. :)

    Nutella size? The bigger the better. :)

    BTW, can you tell that I toasted the bread first? :)

  10. Uhmm...

    it seems like EVERYthing has resveratrol now a days... so why aren't we benefiting from it? Well... its in such tiny proportions, it get's flushed out.

    Use a supplement with 500mg per capsule, otherwise the reservatrol is just hype.

  11. PB is fine, and Reese's are my favorite candy. But I have never tried Nutella! It looks so plastic! :| But I realize, after reading so much praise, it must be great. It's true that raising kids seems almost impossible without PB. We "struggled" without it in Istanbul. (That's why we moved home . . . ha!)

  12. Anon: I don't know who you are but I'm sure you're right!

    Ruth: Well, you need to go out and get it! I LOVE Nutella (but Donica doesn't). Do you have that memory of Dad, I wonder! No wonder you came back home. :)

  13. As you have already mentioned in your far as I'm concerned you can have all the Nutella in the world. Now PB on the other hand, you might have to fight me for!! PB on bread...on toast...on crackers...on a spood....the perfect food!!

  14. What a lovely compares of American and European food and culture. I don't know why, but it reminds me of a slogan a friend of mine had on his t-shirt:
    'gas and alcohol don't mix, but gas alone isn't bad' LoL
    Have a lovely weekend Ginnie and enjoy your stay!

  15. Donica: HA. More Nutella for me, which I like. But I'll fight you for the PB (even on a "spood!").

    Renny: LOL. Don't you love those slogans! Thanks for your kind weekend wishes!

  16. Who'd have thought PB would inspire such discourse? Natural PB is better than Jiff, but harder to stir.
    Did you know this new blogger thing makes it harder to sign in and comment on other's blogs? I write a comment then get to the bottom and can't figure out how to sign in, then my comment's gone. Eventually I do it again and it works, but I am annoyed.

  17. Freue Morgen:-)
    You can tell. Who else could blend Atlanta and Hannover piece of cake like that? Nobody. And with such joy. A completly new world discovered - at least for me.
    I have never tasted Nutella nor peanutbutter - I might be nuts - but that's a fact. (When young - we used to have "HaPå" - very similar to Nutella, but Nestlé bought the tiny Norwegian company - and HaPå became history.)

    Excellent pictures,as allways.

    Haben Sie beide eine schönen wochenend.

  18. Susan D: You're right about natural PB, of course. Hard to stir because the oil separates from the peanuts. I think I have two jars of it somewhere at home!

    Years ago I remember buying natural almond butter when we lived in Pasadena. Now THAT was good!

    Tor: HA. Actually, YOU could do even better in blending a story, Mr. Norwegian! And you ARE nuts but so humorous! If ever I see you in Hannover or Michigan, the snack I will offer you is a PB and Nutella sandwich. :)

  19. Don just reminded me that Nutella has hazelnut flavor, and that's probably why I've never tried it. I don't prefer that flavor. More for the rest of you!

  20. Interestingly, Ruth, I'm not sure I TASTE a hazelnut flavor with Nutella. I think it tastes more like chocolate! Can you say NO to that?? :)

  21. Believe it or not, I have never tried Nutella, but if it tastes like chocolate, I'm bound to get hooked!

    (I only have 1 blog.I meant I can only manage 3 posts a week! 3 blogs would drive me nuts!)

  22. MOI: I know what you mean! My sister has 3 blogs--used to have 4--but is "active" on only one. I have 2 and have slowed this one down to no more than 3x a week.

    YES, you would get hooked on Nutella. Much better than jam/jelly. :)

  23. Ginnie - I grew up on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches AND I have an open jar of Nutella in the cupboard. Why didn't I think to put them together (since I also keep a bag of Reese's Miniatures in my freezer)? I am on my way downstairs to give this new wonder a try and THANKS for the thought!

  24. Judy: HA! Will wonders never cease! We're never too old for trying something new, are we?! :) I hope you liked it as much as I do.

  25. Ginnie - Don't know if I should bless you or curse you - Nutella and peanut butter are the BEST! Now something new that I shouldn't be eating! Thanks a lot!!!