I love peanut butter and jelly. And unlike most Americans, I’ve had to defend that love vociferously. When I was at university in Oxford, I remember one of the first weird looks I ever got for being a Yankee was when I was talking about how much I loved PB&J as a kid, and how even with a wheat allergy, I’d try to eat it on rice cakes or in oatmeal or simply spooned straight from the jar. At first, I thought the confusion was simple; in England, jelly is used most often to refer to the mint jelly eaten with lamb, or what we call Jell-O. They call fruit jam or preserves, well, jam or preserves – which we also use. But even that sounded a bit strange to my friends. After months, I coaxed a few into trying the combination on their morning toast, and they were hooked…but in the process I found myself in a position that would become all too familiar over the next few years, that of the explainer and defender of American food. I even wrote an article about it on my American Tongue blog at the student newspaper, Cherwell. Which was odd, considering I definitely did not eat the typical ‘American diet’ they’d heard horrors of! There are some things about American food I’ll never be able to explain, but PB&J is not one of them.
That said, this delicious little cake is a new twist on an old favorite – a peanut butter baked oatmeal cake with a smear of blueberry jam on top. Warm and comforting on this chilly winter morning, it’s a wonderful way to start the day. Try it paired with a mug of blueberry coffee and some fresh blueberries on the side, and see for yourself!
1/2 cup gluten-free rolled oats
1-2 Tbsp peanut butter (I used Peanut Butter & Co Smooth Operator)
1/4 cup applesauce
1/4 cup milk of choice (I used So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Milk)
1 Tbsp Greek yogurt (I recommend using 2% or full fat for the creaminess)
1 Tbsp blueberry preserves (you can also use raspberry or your favorite flavor)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp brown sugar
For ramekin: 1 tsp butter (can substitute olive oil or cooking spray)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Combine all dry ingredients in a small bowl, then add in wet ingredients and mix well.
3. Melt butter in 1-cup (8 ounce) ramekin to coat inner surface. (You can also use olive oil or cooking spray, but I found that butter worked really well in this recipe to give the cake a yummy buttery crust).
4. Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes, then set oven to high broil for an additional 5 minutes.
5. Use a knife to carefully pry the edges of the cake from the ramekin (easy as long as it was greased well!) and flip upside down into a dish.
6. Top with blueberry preserves. Enjoy!
What’s your favorite way to enjoy PB&J? Did you ever find yourself trying to explain how awesome it is to people who have never heard of putting them together?
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