Nothing conjures up memories of childhood quite like a PB+J. Peanut butter and jelly was a quintessential element of my childhood as I’m sure it was for so many of you. Sticky peanut butter overflowing the perimeters of soft slices of bread and topped with globs of sweet jelly. Really, does it get any better?
Although many might consider this savory-and-sweet delight of a sandwich to be a lunchtime treat to be enjoyed by those under the age of 18, I find no shame in indulging at the age of 29. And you can bet a pretty penny that 30 won’t stand in my way either. For those who unabashedly indulge at any age and for those who may blush at the thought of eating this treat post-childhood, I give you the above rendition to cater to your senses and sensibilities: the grown-up PB+J.
Crusty toasted multigrain bread slathered with warm brie, sweet strawberry compote, crunchy almond butter, and the peppery bite of a gentle handful of arugula. This sandwich will warm your heart with childhood memories, impress your grown-up taste buds, and nestle you amongst its layers of flavor.
Grown-Up PB+J (Makes 2 Sandwiches)
◊ 4 slices crusty whole grain bread, toasted
◊ 4 tablespoons strawberry compote (see recipe below) or strawberry preserves
◊ 4 ounces triple cream brie, cut into four slices
◊ 3 tablespoons almond butter or nut butter of choice
◊ handful of arugula
1. Heat broiler on low heat. Take two slices of the toasted bread, place them on a baking pan, and layer each with two slices of the brie cheese. Place under broiler for 3-4 minutes or until cheese has melted and is dripping over sides of bread. Remove from oven and top each with 2 tablespoons of the strawberry compote or preserves.
2. Slather reserved slices of bread with nut butter and top each with a gentle handful of arugula. Put sandwich halves together, serve immediately, and enjoy.
Strawberry Compote (Makes 1 cup)
◊ 2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
◊ 2-3 tablespoons agave nectar
1. Heat a small sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add in strawberries and agave nectar and cook until strawberries begin to break down into a thick compote (15-20 minutes).