Until 9th grade, when my Mom decided she wasn’t going to pack school lunches for me and my seven other siblings anymore, we ate a lot of peanut butter and jelly, bologna, and liverwurst sandwiches. I’m not sure which one of my parents thought liverwurst was a suitable lunch meat for southern kids, but somehow I suspect it was my Dad, the one with the adventurous taste buds. There was little variety and none of those sandwiches was a good trade for something more appetizing, and lord knows I tried. I was a shameless lunchroom wheeler-dealer and managed to trade a liverwurst sandwich to some poor girl who was bored with her daily peanut butter and banana on white bread. She actually enjoyed the liverwurst (shudder), but I did not like the sweet and smushy quality of her’s.
Fast forward to my first pregnancy and the desire to mix flavors. I was a self taught cook and not bad at it. My sister, Ann, the one after me, went to Cordon Bleu in London and taught me a few tricks. Before getting pregnant I started experimenting with flavors, but pregnancy ratcheted up that practice. I started mixing pickled fruits and vegetables of every kind with what I would hope to be a complementary food. Through this practice I developed a fondness for dill pickle chips on peanut butter sandwiches. One day I got ready to make my p b & dp sandwich but the pickles were gone. All I had left of my pickled anything stash was a jar of green pimento-stuffed olives. I put them in place of the pickles and a favorite was born. Mmmmmmm.
Over the years and post-pregnancy I have refined the sandwich and it is still a favorite. Here is my peanut butter and olive sandwich recipe with an optional addition I saw on food.com. I prefer mine best. The p b & o sandwich is actually delicious, not just because it has olives in it, but because it has that great salty and sweet combination that many of us love. I put mine on a hearty, chewy, and flavorful bread like rye. It adds another textural layer to the salty-sweet flavor.
P B & O Sandwich Recipe
2 slices – hearty bread (like chewy rye)
1 big scoop – creamy peanut butter (the natural kind isn’t sweet enough)
9 each – green pimento-stuffed olives
(optional addition) 1 tsp – mayonnaise
Spread peanut butter on one slice of bread and optional mayonnaise on the other. Cut olives length-wise and place randomly on peanut butter. Put bread slices together and warm for a few seconds in microwave, flip and warm other side. Eat.
If you enjoy this sandwich tell a friend or put it in your child’s lunch box.
May the sun shine through your branches.