Chocolate Peanut Butter Chiffon Pie OR How I Tricked My Son into Letting Me Blog

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lee-mom-blog-icon1People always ask me what it’s like to be The Peanut Butter Guy’s mom.  They always ask “Did you send Lee to school with peanut butter sandwiches every day when he was little?”  And “Does he really eat peanut butter every day?”

Truth is, I’m a pretty good cook.  I’ve always really liked preparing food for my family and watching them enjoy it.  What I don’t like are complicated recipes and expensive, hard-to-find ingredients.  I’ve always loved the taste of peanut butter, and of course I love Peanut Butter & Co.– especially on English muffins, pretzel sticks, and even straight from the jar!

I also love cooking and baking with Lee’s peanut butter.  I know my son wrote an entire cookbook full of “from scratch” recipes, but to be honest, I’m just not a “from scratch” kind of girl.  Much to Lee’s chagrin, I see nothing wrong with using cake mix from a box or refrigerated cookie dough and doctoring them up to make something new.

Lee had been talking about starting a Peanut Butter & Co. blog for a while, and how he wanted to post recipes.  I volunteered some recipes using my “shortcuts” but he said he only wanted to use “from scratch” recipes because that’s what his customers wanted.

Now, I know my son is a good guy, and that he is a very smart young man.  But he lives in New York City and people there just don’t cook and eat the way the rest of America does.  I see the people at my local Shop Rite, Super Fresh, and Whole Foods that buy Peanut Butter & Co. and I know they don’t all go home and use it in “from scratch” recipes.  I know most of them would love quick and easy recipes using things they’ve already got in their pantry.

Well, last month Lee came home for a few days and I thought I’d prove my point.

A few days before he came home, I mentioned to Lee that I had just been at Hesh’s, a local bakery in Philadelphia that I’d often bought cakes from when Lee was growing up, and that I thought I saw a chocolate peanut butter pie in the display case.  Knowing that he is always on the hunt to see what people are doing with peanut butter, I asked him if he wanted me to pick one up to try.  “Sure,” he said, and I smiled as I put my plan into action.

pie-mixing2The night before Lee arrived, I picked up a Keebler Graham ReadyCrust from ShopRite, along with an 8oz tub of Cool Whip.  Back at home, I combined the Cool Whip with 1 jar of Dark Chocolate Dreams in a bowl and folded them together until the mixture was light and fluffy.  I spooned the chocolate peanut butter “mousse” into the pie crust, covered it, and then put it in the freezer to set.

I also took some Golden Roasted Peanuts and chopped them up and set them aside to throw on at the last minute.

Well, Lee came home and we had a nice dinner.  Jamie, my fiancé barbecued some chicken and we had steamed broccoli, corn on the cob and some baked potatoes too.  I asked Lee about the blog and again volunteered some of my recipes and again I was rebuffed in favor of the “from scratch” recipes.

After dinner, I asked Lee if he had room for dessert and if he wanted to try the pie from Hesh’s.  Jamie gave me a little wink –  he knew what I had been up to and had even gone to Hesh’s that morning and bought some cookies, just to get a box for me to put my finished pie in.  I took the box out of the fridge, and put it on the table and cut the baker’s twine (that Jamie had so skillfully retied) and opened the lid and placed the pie on the table.

“Looks pretty good,” Lee said.  “Let’s see how it tastes.”  I cut everyone a slice, topped it with an extra dollop of Cool Whip, threw on some of the chopped peanuts and waited for the moment of truth.  Lee took a bite and smiled.  “Pretty good.  It’s a lot lighter than I thought it would be,” he said.  “I wonder what they used.  They probably used heavy cream and whipped it, then folded in the confectioner’s sugar and cocoa powder, and then added the peanut butter.”  He paused for a moment and then took another bite.  “Or maybe they used cream cheese or sour cream as a base – that’s possible too.  The crust is just perfect too.”  He went on, “This is a lot different than the chocolate peanut butter pie we serve at our sandwich shop, but I like it.  It’s light, and sweet, and very rich tasting.  It really does take skill to do this.”

Jamie was almost busting out laughing at this point.  Lee was a little confused, and I decided it was time to reveal the truth.  “This isn’t from Hesh’s” I said. “This is homemade.”

piefinal“Really Mom?” he looked at my quizzingly.  “I’m impressed.  How did you do it?”

I took out a container of Cool Whip, a readymade graham cracker pie crust, and a jar of Dark Chocolate Dreams and put them on the table.  “Cooking can be easy,” I said, “when you have a few shortcuts.”

Lee got very quiet for a moment and his face was a little red.  I had made my point.  I was ready for the apology, the vindication that my shortcuts don’t make my recipes any less blog-worthy, and the acknowledgment that sometimes, mother really does know best.

“Well, I think our customers really would like this recipe, and I guess it’s silly not to share it with them just because it’s not from scratch.  I’m sorry I didn’t take your recipes – I’m sorry I didn’t take you more seriously.”  I smiled.  This is what I had been waiting for.

“You have a lot of these shortcuts, don’t you?” he said.  I nodded.  “How would you like to share them with America?”

So that’s my story.  Every other week I will post an easy-to-prepare recipe using Peanut Butter & Co.  I can’t promise that it will always be healthy or all-natural, and it will probably never be “from scratch,” but it will always be easy to shop for, a cinch to prepare, and it will always be delicious!

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8 Comments

  1. Posted November 16, 2008 at 3:40 am | Permalink

    Love the peanut butter ideas. Great stuff!

  2. Scott Stephan
    Posted November 17, 2008 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

    Clint- Stay tuned! We’ll have another easy recipe every two weeks!

  3. Amy
    Posted November 18, 2008 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    I LOVE PB and PB&J and can’t wait for more of your Mom’s recipes. Can you tell me if I can buy your PB in Alabama?

    Thanks so much!
    amy

  4. Lee Zalben- The Peanut Butter Guy
    Posted November 19, 2008 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    Amy,

    You can try using the store locator on our website: http://www.ilovepeanutbutter.com/storefinder.html

    Otherwise, nationally we can be found in many groceries. Walmart, Kroger, Stop ‘n Shop to name a few!

  5. Posted March 26, 2009 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    hah!

    way to go mom!

  6. Tiffany
    Posted May 5, 2009 at 12:40 am | Permalink

    I am looking for a peanut butter pie recipe that my family loves, but I have lost it. I remember that it does not have powerdered sugar in it, but it does have BROWN SUGAR, and PEANUT BUTTER that you melt over the stove and then you add cool whip, but i dont know what else and how much of the ingredients goes in it… PLEASE HELP!!!!

  7. Posted September 3, 2012 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    Hi there, I enjoy reading through your post. I like to write
    a little comment to support you.

  8. Posted December 11, 2012 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

    What’s up to every one, the contents existing at this site are actually amazing for people experience, well, keep up the good work fellows.


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