I'm no fan of deception when it comes to getting kids to eat healthy. But I'm not above novelty to keep things interesting.
Which is how I came up with this idea for candy-like truffles made from that all-American childhood staple -- peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. These are seriously delicious, even if the process of making them seems pretty strange.
All I did was make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on whole-wheat bread, then run them through the food processor until they formed a thick dough. I then rolled tablespoon-sized chunks of it into balls and coated some with crushed peanuts, others with powdered sugar.
Banish all thoughts of those dreaded soggy PB&J sandwiches from your lunch box days. While reminiscent of a sandwich, the texture of these truffles is pleasantly chewy and thick, and the taste is decadent.
Alternative coatings could include crushed almonds or pistachios, mini chocolate chips (though that detracts from the healthy aspect of this kid-friendly snack), cocoa powder, or finely chopped dried fruit, such as dried cranberries or cherries.
The oil in the peanut butter and the moisture in the jam means any powdery coating (such as powdered sugar or cocoa powder) will moisten over time. They still are delicious, but kind of sticky. Consider applying such coatings only just before serving.
Coated or uncoated, these truffles can be refrigerated for several days, pack easily in lunch boxes and improve with age. My son actually thought I'd given him a doughnut.
PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY TRUFFLES
6 slices whole-wheat bread
1-1/2 cups peanut butter
1 (10-ounce) bottle (1-1/4 cups) no-sugar jam
Crushed nuts, finely diced dried fruit or powdered sugar, for coating (optional)
DIRECTIONS: In a food processor, combine the bread, peanut butter and jam. Process until the ingredients form a thick, dark brown dough with an even consistency. There should be no streaks of peanut butter or jam. Break off tablespoon-sized chunks of the dough and roll into balls. The truffles then can be rolled in crushed nuts, finely diced dried fruit or powdered sugar. If not serving immediately, refrigerate in an airtight container.
Makes 24 truffles.
Nutrition information per truffle (values are rounded to the nearest whole number and do no include coatings): 136 calories; 74 calories from fat; 8 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 0 mg cholesterol; 12 g carbohydrate; 5 g protein; 2 g fiber; 93 mg sodium.