Banana and peanut butter I get. Even maple and bacon I get, but combining them all? That just always seemed wrong, like combining Nine Inch Nails with Carly Rae wrong. No it’s not because I’m vegan, I’m pretty sure if you follow my blog you know I’m a fan of smoky, salty, fattiness. It just seemed like a really weird, unnatural combination. But then I awhile ago I made a Peanut Butter Banana Chickpea Bacon Sandwich and I thought to myself, “Hey there self, you know, maybe we’ve got this whole peanut butter banana bacon thing wrong, because this ain’t half bad!”
As it turns out, that Elvis guy was onto something, but as usual, given enough time my sucky memory tucks things away, never to be thought of again. Thanks to one of my Facebook followers Christine, (*waves hand* Hi Christine!) this whole flavor concept was brought to my attention again. You see, Christine and her family used to be big fans of eating toasted peanut butter and bacon sandwiches, and I just had give Christine a tasty alternative while also reminding myself what all the fuss was about.
I didn’t want to just post about a pb sandwich with some banana and store bought veggie bacon thrown in, hellz no, who do you think I am, Sandra Lee? This baby was being made from scratch, so not only did I whip up a batch of homemade maple tofu bacon but I even made my own maple peanut butter to go with it! I recently got into the habit of making my own peanut butter but making a flavored peanut butter was a first, and as it turns out, a dangerous thing. Oh god it’s so yummy! Mapley, peanutty and just a hint of cinnamon, I was totally eating spoonfuls of this stuff.
This sandwich did not disappoint. The maple peanut butter and sweet bananas were uber delicious with the smoky salty tofu bacon. Frying it made it super crunchy and made all the insides warm and deliciously gooey. If you make the peanut butter and mix up the marinade for the tofu the night before, this makes for a really quick and awesome lunch. Thanks for the inspiration Christine! Looks like you and your family really knew what this sweet and salty combo was all about 🙂
FRIED MAPLE PEANUT BUTTER BANANA BACON SANDWICHES
- Store bought or homemade Maple Peanut Butter (recipe below)
- Tofu Bacon (recipe below)
- 3-4 bananas, sliced
- 6-8 slices of bread
- Margarine, for frying
- 1 package (350g) extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 3 tablespoons sunflower or canola oil
- 3 tablespoons water
- 3 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
- 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons unflavoured coconut oil
- To make the tofu bacon, slice the tofu widthwise into paper-thin strips. In a 8 x 11.5 dish, mix together nutritional yeast, oil, water, maple syrup, tamari, salt, liquid smoke, onion and garlic powder. Carefully lay tofu slices in marinade, coating both sides. Cover and let marinate for at least 1 hour, or place in fridge overnight. Be careful not to move the tofu around too much as it tears easily.
- In a large well-seasoned cast iron pan over medium heat, add the coconut oil. Gently add marinated tofu slices and pan fry 3 minutes per side, or until each side starts to turn brown and crispy. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels. Spray with 2 to 3 squirts of smoke flavour.
- Heat a medium cast iron skillet over medium-low heat.
- Take two slices of bread and spread one side of each with maple peanut butter. Take one slice and add strips of tofu bacon on top of the nut butter.
- Top with banana slices and the remaining slice of bread, nut butter side down.
- Add margarine to the skillet and let melt. Place sandwich in the pan and fry for a few minutes or until lightly browned, then flip and cook the other side. Remove from pan, let cool slightly before cutting. Eat as is or drizzle with additional maple syrup.
MAPLE PEANUT BUTTER
- 2 cups raw peanuts
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon maple extract
- 1-2 teaspoons walnut oil (or any other complimentary/neutral oil)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss the peanuts with the maple syrup and spread out evenly on the baking pan. Roast peanuts for 20 to 25 minutes, tossing once during cooking. Keep a close eye on them as they burn quickly.
- Remove from oven and let cool for a minimum of 10-15 minutes.
- Place 1 2/3 cups of the peanuts into a food processor or high powdered blender and process until the mixture resembles peanut butter, stopping to scrape down the side of the bowl if necessary. This can take up to 10 minutes.
- Process in the cinnamon, salt and extract, adding gradually. If it still looks too thick, drizzle in the oil and keep processing. Put the nuts into a food processor or high powdered blender and pulse to begin breaking them up. If using a food processor, you may need to add the additional oil , just drizzle in and run the processor 30-45 seconds. You may not need all the oil, it just depends on the moisture content of the peanuts.
- Pulse in 1/3 cup of reserved peanuts, leaving it very chunky.
- Store in a sealed container in the fridge.