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Peanuts Around the World

Photo by <strong>Karolina Grabowska</strong>

Most of us are familiar with the traditional PB&J sandwiches packed in our middle-school lunches, but how many of us have eaten Adobong Mani from the Philippines? Peanuts might seem like an American pastime, filling in our sandwiches, smeared on our Ritz crackers, or coated by tiny chocolate cups. But other places and cultures have used and continue to use peanuts in all kinds of recipes for all kinds of meals.

These recipes feature dishes from Thailand, Morocco, the Philippines, and Bolivia. Some of them are the kind of thing to make for a fun date-night dinner and some as a pre-game snack.

Adobong Mani by Vera Abitbol

A Filipino street food, great as a snack and an appetizer.


  • 2 lb peanuts (with or without skin) 
  • 1 head garlic 
  • 2 teaspoons salt 
  • 2 cups vegetable oil (for frying) 


  • Peel all the garlic cloves. 
  • Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet. When the oil is hot, over medium-high heat, dip the garlic cloves and fry until they turn golden brown. 
  • Remove the garlic and set aside. 
  • Fry the peanuts over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. This should take about 10 minutes. 
  • Drain the peanuts in a sieve and season with salt. 

Pad Thai with Peanut Sauce by Tiffany, at Crème de la Crumb

A classic meal from Thailand and a great dinner option for date night.

Pad Thai Ingredients

  • 10 ounces thin rice noodles - cooked according to package directions 
  • 1 pound medium or large shrimp - or 2 large chicken breasts, chopped into 1-inch pieces 
  • 1 tablespoon oil 
  • ½ cup bean sprouts - optional 
  • 3 eggs - whisked 
  • 3 green onions - chopped 
  • ½ cup shredded carrots 
  • chopped cilantro and lime wedges - for serving 

Peanut Sauce Ingredients

  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter - microwaved for 30-45 seconds until easily pourable 
  • ¼ cup fish sauce - may substitute low sodium soy sauce in a pinch 
  • juice of 1 lime 
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar 
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce 
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic - OR ½ teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 2 teaspoons sriracha sauce - OR 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 
  • ½ cup water - more as needed 


  • Stir together all sauce ingredients until smooth, set aside. It should be easily pourable – if not, add more water. 
  • Drizzle a large skillet over medium heat withoil. Saute shrimp, bean sprouts, and carrots until shrimp is cooked through. 
  • Push shrimp and veggies to one side of the pan, pour whisked eggs onto the uncovered half of the pan. Stir eggs often until scrambled. 
  • Stir noodles, sauce, and green onions into thepan. Give it a good toss, garnish with cilantro and lime wedges if desired and serve immediately. 

Sopa de Mani by Renards Gourmets

Try topping it with French fries for a fun and traditional twist to this Bolivian soup.


  • 3 lb beef with bone (neck or rib), cut into pieces 
  • 4 oz. raw peanuts 
  • 1 white onion , peeled and chopped 
  • 1 carrot , diced 
  • 3 oz. peas (fresh or frozen) 
  • 1 stalk celery , finely chopped 
  • ½ red bell pepper , diced 
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil 
  • 3 cloves garlic , chopped 
  • 6 cups beef broth (or vegetable broth) 
  • 4 potatoes , cut into large cubes 
  • 1 teaspoon cumin 
  • ½ teaspoon oregano 
  • ½ lb macaroni pasta 
  • 1 small bunch flat parsley , chopped 
  • Salt 
  • Black pepper 


  • Toast the macaroni in a dry pan, stirring constantly over medium heat until golden brown (about 8 minutes). Set aside. 
  • Soak the peanuts in hot water for 2 minutes so that they can be peeled easily. Drain them. 
  • In the bowl of a blender, mix the peanuts and a cup of cold water until you obtain a paste. Set aside. 
  • In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat and sauté the garlic. 
  • Add the onion, carrot, peas, and celery. 
  • Sauté over high heat for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. 
  • Add the meat, red bell pepper and broth and sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes. 
  • Add the blended peanuts and stir well. 
  • Add the potatoes. Add salt, black pepper, cumin and oregano. Mix well. 
  • Cover and cook over medium heat for 15 minutes. 
  • Add the toasted macaroni. 
  • Cover and cook over low heat for 15 minutes, stirring regularly. 
  • Sprinkle with chopped parsley at time of serving. 

Peanut Couscous Provided by Food Network

A Moroccan dish that works great as a side or even a full meal.


  • 2 tbsps. Crisco® Pure Canola Oil 
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions 
  • 1/2 cup chopped red or green bell pepper 
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth 
  • 1/2 cup Jif® Extra Crunchy Peanut Butter 
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin 
  • Salt and pepper 
  • 1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen peas (tiny deluxe, if possible) 
  • 1 cup couscous 


  • HEAT oil in a 2 1/2 or 3 quart saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper and garlic. Cook just until onion is translucent. Add broth and bring to a boil. 
  • WHISK in peanut butter and cumin. Blend well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add peas and bring to a boil. Stir in couscous and return to a boil, stirring constantly. 
  • REMOVE from heat. Cover and let sit about 5 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork; serve immediately.