What is New England’s stake in its Sticky Staple The Fluffernutter Sandwich?
In a society engaging in substituting sugary substances, unhealthy fats, and bleached flours it is obvious why a beloved noontime favorite
is practically extinct. If you grew up in New England up until the 1990’s, you are familiar with the famous Fluffernutter Sandwich! Sitting here staring at my sandwich, fathoming its structure, it occurs to me that there is a solution to the question… “Is there a correct way to eat a Fluffernutter sandwich?” Of course, there is! Contemplating my course causes me to examine facts concerning my lunch.
Although, I can’t imagine a Baby Boomer who’s not at least tried a Fluffernutter, let’s look at it closer. If you do not already know, let me describe this controversial sandwich. A Fluffernutter, deemed the name during the 1960’s by the main ingredient manufacturer, is made up of simply peanut butter and Fluff. In an advertising campaign for their component of this sandwich trademarking their culinary creation, Durkee-Mower, Inc. of East Lynn, MA unknowingly initializes a regional icon! There is even a “National Fluffernutter Day” on October 8th each year!
How A Fluffernutter became a part of New England
They still produce the confection after almost 100 years. Fluffernutter components of Fluff and peanut butter are the quintessential combination of our era. Comparative to that of PB&J, or peanut butter and chocolate. We all know what came of the candy bar that fell into the peanut butter jar, right 😉 Okay, maybe some of you are too young to remember that series of commercials. So, just in case you don’t, I’m referring to Resee’s Peanut Butter cup commercials. https://youtu.be/NjFzvlSaGNk?t=5
Durkee-Mower’s instinctive business savvy recently settled a law suit instigated when William-Sonoma tried pairing the ingredients into a cookie of the same name. “The Fluffernutter” is a registered trademark. Now, Fluff is a state of marshmallows somewhere between a solid and a sticky liquid called a marshmallow cream.
How a Fluffernutter is Constructed
The creation of this sandwich requires two slices of white bread, yes, really, I said white bread! Particularly, Dreikorn’s or Sunbeam should be the brands of choice. Today, Dreikorn’s is defunct and White bread favorite growing up in New England exists only in vintage memorabilia and artifacts at the auction house. Then you spread a thin layer of peanut butter, any brand is fine but if you’re a New Englander, Teddie Bear Peanut Butter or Peter Pan is what you use.
Are you or your kids allergic to peanut butter? I’m
thinking of the amount of stock shares for peanut butter over the last fifteen years plummeting from the number of kids not able to eat the once pantry go-to item. Next, you apply an apt amount of Fluff. It is hard to mention any specific quantity because of it’s consistency, so use your best judgement. In my opinion, the more the merrier! Did your mom make you PB&J or Fluffernutters? Do you watch your sugar intake and carbs? My guilty conscience is eating at me with each glob of delectable fluff!
Is There a Special Formula to Eat a Fluffernutter
Do you know how to eat a Fluffernutter? You must wonder why I should ask such a question. How to eat a Fluffernutter? It’s a sandwich! You just bite it, right? Nope! As particular as its ingredients, so is the manner in which you eat a Fluffernutter sandwich. There is a method to my madness, believe me.
When you first pick up your sandwich, you need to pay attention to your grip. As you know, white bread is soft, keep in mind, so are the peanut butter and Fluff. This makes your Fluffernutter extremely squishy! Secondly, Fluff is a sticky substance. How sticky is it? Well, reminisce roasting marshmallows around the campfire. Can you picture it? There you are with a stick in hand, marshmallow on the end. You’re pulling the
marshmallow up, carefully capturing the gooey inside by the toasted top. Then, it happens… the toasted top pulls off and leaves the middle sticky, gooey, glob on the stick! Remember how sticky the glob is? Back to our sandwich! Soft, sticky, and squishy only begin the complexity of eating the Fluffernutter.
How to Hold a Fluffernutter
The way in which you hold your sandwich works hand in hand with taking the actual bites. You must achieve the adequate ratio of peanut butter to Fluff per bite. The importance of this step falls to the peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth versus the sweetness of the sugary Fluff.
Fulfilling a sweet tooth is a way of life in New England between our resources of maple syrup, molasses, and honey. However, there is such a thing as too much! To provide the necessary bite ratio of sweet versus sticky, you need to hold your Fluffernutter with the peanut butter layer side down. This way, you automatically bite enough Fluff to stop the bread and peanut butter from sticking to the roof of your mouth. Thus, at the same time, it coats the fluff with enough peanut butter cutting the sweetness!
That’s not the whole of it though! Now, we’ll discuss the direction your bite pattern. Ready? Your first bite should start at the top of the bread. Why? The upper crust of bread bakes faster than the bottom making it crustier and lighter. Therefore, the crust at the top of white bread is more fragile and doesn’t have the strength needed to support the weight of the Fluff. As you progress, the marshmallow cream squishes toward the middle and bottom of the bread. Ideally, the object here is to end with your last bite at the Fluffernutter’s bottom corner. This provides our solution to serving up a sticky New England staple with a proven course considering weight, squish ability, and optimal taste ratio right to the end of your sandwich!
Why Retro Childhood Eats are Meaningful
Every now and then, okay so more often than not, I fail to curb my desires. Yeah, not what you think! I’m talking taste buds and parts of the brain that produce euphoric feelings from food. One reason food serves as comfort comes from memories you associate with it. For example, the Fluffernutter is as popular in New England as its sister sandwich PB&J (peanut butter and jelly) sustaining kids lunches for years. Now, when a grown up eats a sampling of his childhood it naturally stimulates memories of a simpler and sweeter time in his life. Hmm, thus comfort food is formed!
Me eating a Fluffernutter depicts memories walking home from school to eat satisfying lunches with my mom, sweet summer days camping, and fulfilling road trips with no apparent destination except allowing my father to fish a roadside stream.
Other types of foods I hold dear to my heart, or rather should I say my mouth? Corn meal and flour dredged trout pan fried with a side of baked beans or sliced potato home fries. A camping supper favorite, if my father had a good catch that day! Hot dogs, baked beans, and brown bread every Saturday night and during the
summer added accompaniments of sliced beefsteak garden tomatoes and a spoonful of last season’s green tomato piccalilli. My mother’s beef stew brings warm memories each time I make a batch. Her Woolworth’s style Cheesecake recipe still :0 wows :0 most of us with its taste and nostalgia.
Share your favorite Fluffernutter story
A Gram Blog wants to know! What childhood foods walk you down memory lane? Is it TV Dinners in the foil trays? Mom’s meatloaf? Do you still make the foods that take you on this trip? Have you altered the recipes at all to accommodate a healthier, easier, or quicker version? Why is it one of your “comfort food” picks? Would you make a Fluffernutter sandwich for your grandchildren? Which ingredients could you use as substitutes to create a similar food and how would you name it?
Continue to follow upcoming posts for your answers! I for one am curious to see what you all share 😊 We will also be highlighting vintage recipes and why or why not they still appear on our tables. How to Make Grandmother’s Summer Recipes. Be sure to secure your personal copy of upcoming posts delivered directly by subscribing to A Gram Blog 😊
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