Because of their high fat content, peanuts are not recommended for adults. The same is true for all tree nuts as well, even for coconut in all its forms. Drs. Esselstyn and McDougall agree that those who have neither cardio-vascular nor weight issues may have 1 oz of walnuts on rare occasions. Other doctors such as Joel Fuhrman, Neal Barnard and Dean Ornish, who specialize in the prevention and reversal of chronic disease through dietary change, are more lenient on the consumption of nuts. But here is the basic message: “Nuts are for rare occasions and in very small quantities.”
So what’s a nut-lover to do? Here’s what I do. If nuts are not in the house, they’re not a problem. I’ll only buy them for a special occasion for a specific recipe. The same goes for peanut butter. When I discovered PB2, a powdered peanut butter with 85% of the fat removed (available online and in local grocery stores), I realized I could make old favorite dishes calling for peanut butter without the addition of a high fat ingredient. Reconstituted with water, it can be used as a spread or in recipes on special occasions.
Here is a recipe, based on one in FORKS OVER KNIVES THE COOKBOOK by Del Sroufe. It calls for peanut butter and coconut milk, two problematic ingredients for which I’ve found substitutes, resulting in a delicious, creamy peanut sauce.
1 cup nondairy milk (soy, almond, rice, oat, hemp)
½ teaspoon Imitation Coconut Extract
3 tablespoons reconstituted PB2
1 or 2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Cook in large pot over low heat, stirring continuously until smooth (8-10 minutes). Add 4 cups of water-sautéd fresh or frozen vegetables such as onions, mushrooms, peppers, snow peas, carrots, broccoli, chopped greens. Serve over whole grain pasta, grains or potatoes.
No meat, no dairy, no added oil, no problem. Enjoy!