First, please allow me to get an unpleasant truth out of the way. Today I was going to tell you about biscuits. But the biscuits didn’t hold up their end of the bargain. They should have been fantastic: buttery biscuits studded with chunks of Parmesan cheese and laced with lemon and black pepper. The idea of them was fantastic. But the reality fell short of my biscuit dreams. I’m not sure who’s to blame, me or the recipe, but together we were not a good couple.
The story is even more interesting. The first time I made them, I halved the recipe to make just a handful of biscuits for myself, something to go along with my bowl of soup and a Twilight DVD. But I forgot to halve the milk, and in one swift pour I shot right past biscuit dough into something that resembled muffin batter. I cursed myself and panicked, and then I said, “What the hell,” and made muffins. The timing was a little tricky, and I was convinced they’d be oozing raw batter on the inside. But twenty-something minutes and a few toothpick pokes later and they were good. Lemony, a little sweet, with a cakelike texture, they were worthy of seconds. On the outer edges, the Parmesan had browned and crisped—delicious. The only problem is that I haven’t repeated this experiment, so I can’t tell you how long to bake them nor what happens if you scale up to make enough for more than you and a DVD.
So no biscuits today. How about a peanut butter malt instead?
Holy moly, this was all kinds of delicious. It tasted exactly the way one might expect a peanut butter malt to taste. I had no idea that peanut butter and malt powder got along so well! This treat is sweet and rich, and as you can see above, nice and frothy after a good spin in the blender. I think it’s a perfect dessert, though I can also see leaving out the extra sugar and making it a breakfast malt. It would definitely make me happy to climb out of bed to face the day. Nutritionally, I think it’s a perfectly respectable way to break the fast, between the protein from the peanut butter and milk and the brain-boosting carbs from all the ingredients. It also stores well in the fridge, so you can make a batch at night and save part of it for the morning. It loses some of that fun frothiness, but the flavor stays right where it belongs.
I like a no-fail recipe, and this one fits firmly into that category. It makes up for the well-intentioned biscuits and lofty dreams of aiming higher in one’s kitchen. Sometimes aiming higher really just means reaching up into the cabinet for the malt powder. Happy blending, friends!
Peanut Butter Malt
From The Ultimate Peanut Butter Book by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough
2 cups milk (I used 1% cow’s milk here)
6 tbsp. malted milk powder
1/4 cup peanut butter (I used natural chunky peanut butter, though next time I’ll try to use smooth instead for a more drinkable texture. The chunky was still very tasty though!)
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1) Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Scrape down the sides as needed. Pour into two glasses and serve, or pour into one glass and tuck the rest in a covered drink container and refrigerate it.