The world today owes so much to Black scientists! George Washington Carver was a Black botanist who became famous for his innovative agricultural discoveries. One of George Washington Carver’s claims to fame was his use of peanuts as an alternative crop that helped keep soils healthy. We attribute a lot of what we know and love about peanuts to George Washington Carver, and we’re sure lemurs would be some of his biggest fans! In this activity, we’ll make a favorite lemur snack (peanut butter) in honor of this awesome Black innovator.
Background: While George Washington Carver isn’t technically attributed to the invention of peanut butter, he has a list of accomplishments a mile long. Carver promoted the use of legumes like peanuts, sweet potatoes, and soybeans as a way to avoid soil depletion in areas of the US that had been exclusively growing cotton. You can read more about Carver and his work here! With all the excess peanuts and other legumes being grown, Carver helped find new ways to use these products. Without the excess of peanuts being grown in the US, peanut butter may not have been a thing!
2 cups dry roasted peanuts
1–2 tablespoons honey or sugar
additional salt to taste
Place peanuts in a food processor and run for 4-5 minutes, stopping every 30 seconds-1 minute to scrape down the sides (and give your blender a break!). You’ll see the peanuts go from crumbs to a dry ball to a smooth and creamy peanut butter. Stir in the sugar, honey, or salt, if you want.
*Tip: For smoother, faster blending and creamier peanut butter, add 1-2 Tablespoons of peanut or coconut oil.
*Extras: add any flavorings you want! Vanilla, cinnamon, maple syrup—go wild!