Friday, August 14, 2009

Classic Combinations

Peanut Butter and Jelly

True story. Every single day in pre-K through my two years of kindergarten, I ate exactly the same thing: a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. One day the schoolmarm said to me, "Rene, if you bring a peanut butter and jelly sandwich tomorrow, I am going to replace it with a sandwich of my choosing."

Recognizing at a young age that once you walk away from your principles and act like a punk, you lose all credibility, the next day I brought a PB&J. Sure enough at lunch my beloved sandwich was replaced by a foul, sulfur smelling egg salad sandwich.

I can still remember the stench, sight and taste of that bright yellow, likely salmonella riddled, sandwich as I tried to force it down. After finishing that torture chamber of cuisine, I puked all over that broad and the school. The next day I brought another PB&J. This time I was able to enjoy it in peace and quiet. To this day an egg salad sandwich has never darkened these lips.

Sure you can play with different ingredients to get the flavor combination. You could make peanut butter ice cream with a jelly gastric, if you were so inclined. Hell, Susan Spicer makes a ridiculously good duck PB&J. But for me nothing beats the classic. Bunny bread, JIF creamy, and Welch's Grape Jelly, cut into four squares, slightly warmed from sitting inside a plastic Ziploc baggie and smelling faintly of the Oreos, banana, and Gushers which it cozied up next to in a Mr. T lunch box. Serve it with well-chilled chocolate milk for maximum results.

So here is to you, PB&J, the most noble of all sandwiches, a flavor combination for the ages, builder of character, and my first food love.


Anonymous said...

Have you ever had a PB&J buttered and then grilled?


Rene said...

CookingandSmilin-Yes, that is pretty killer. One of strangest, but good derivations I have seen involved a burger with peanut butter mixed in and a bun spread with grape jelly. It was not bad, if a little gimmicky.

To the emailer: the duck pb&j combines smoked duck breast, cashew butter, and pepper jelly on I believe Rye bread.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't that make it a duck Cb&j?