Thanks to the assistance of my latest running connection with Run, Eat, Tweet AZ, you’ll be seeing more product reviews on this blog! What does that mean for YOU? That means you will be (potentially) introduced to new products, and almost always have an opportunity to win said product in a giveaway! So stick around through this review to hear how you can enter to win some organic NuttZo nut butter for yourself and family; seriously, these folks are generous! Look at the product samples I received in the mail to taste test!? I was having a particularly crummy day, and when this arrived I was all smiles. I LOVE nut butters and all things organic, so I couldn’t wait to give a To-Go packet a try!
Since I’m also a lover of chocolate and peanuts, I decided to go with the 70% Peruvian Dark Chocolate packet for my first taste test. I believe reviews should be about honesty, not just talking up the product because you got some free samples. So my honest opinion was I didn’t really like this flavor – which was unfortunate since I was so excited to try it! Despite kneading the packet for a LOOOOONG time, I was unable to get the oil and nut butter to mesh… so when I opened it, it was very separated still. It was also messy and got all over my hands! Dashed were my hopes of using this during a long run as fuel.
The next time I tried a sample, I was smart and got a spoon and took my sampling to the kitchen. Power Fuel was MUCH better tasting than the chocolate, in my personal opinion, and I also paired it with a banana. (One of my favorite snacks is Mr. Zucchini Runner’s homemade peanut butter on a banana!)
I did try these samples more times than pictured, and eating them by themselves (like I sometimes do with peanut butter, cause I’m crazy like that) wasn’t really an option for me. Because of their seven nut and seed blend, one of those nuts/seeds would always get stuck to the roof of my mouth and it drove me NUTS. (Pun intended!) NuttZo = Good with other stuff.
I will say, I did experience one exception to my own NuttZo rule. When I was craving something salty on a 7.5 mile trail hike in the middle of nowhere, NuttZo sans banana was amazing! I brought 3 sample packs on our hike, one of each flavor, just in case the urge to try a nut butter struck when on the trails. I’m SO glad I did! We had stopped at the halfway point and ate lunch – but I couldn’t shake the need to eat something salty. BOOM! NuttZo to the rescue.
I again opted for the Power Fuel flavor, and kneaded it sufficiently before opening. Since they were warm, they were also softer, which made it easier to squeeze from the package. A word of caution; you can’t scrape your teeth on the outside of this packaging like runner’s like to do with gels on the go — because the paper/ink/packaging isn’t equipped to handle that very well! I felt like I was scraping off flecks of paper and ink the first time I sampled the chocolate, so this time I changed it up (see below)!
Then I decided to make some homemade blueberry jam to accompany my full jar of NuttZo Smooth Power Fuel. Note, that’s not an accidental upside down label, they store all their jars upside down, until they are opened and stored in the fridge. This prevents the nut oils from separating from the nuts! Genius.
Fresh off the stove to my NuttZo sandwich. Yes, sometimes we eat PB&J in our house.
Partnered with jelly and bread, it was amazing! The only true downside for me with NuttZo, is the strong flavor of Brazil Nuts in the mix. So when I put it on bread, with jelly, that strong flavor was far less noticeable. All in all, I would definitely give NuttZo a shot if you haven’t already! If you can’t have peanuts or have a mild peanut allergy in your family, the Power Fuel flavor in both smooth and crunchy are peanut free! (But please note, they are still processed in a plant that contains peanuts.)
Intrigued? Want to try some of your own delicious samples?
You could be the lucky winner of a jar of Crunchy PowerFuel PLUS 24 to-go packets!
Just head on over to the Run Eat Tweet AZ Facebook Page. A quick “like” on the giveaway post, and a comment enters you in to win! Deadline to enter is Oct. 6th!
*This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed, or administered by, or associated with Facebook*
BLUEBERRY JAM RECIPE BELOW>>>>>>
Now, for those of you interested in how I made my blueberry jam, here is the simple recipe:
7 cups washed, organic blueberries
1/2 cup 100% pure maple syrup
3 tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
Place blueberries in a large stock pot and smash with a potato masher. Then add the remaining ingredients and stir. Set heat to low and simmer, stirring every 10 minutes. Cook for a total of 45 minutes, stirring frequently with no lid.
Now, you can either place the jam in individual jars and freeze them (to avoid canning) OR if you enjoy canning and preserving, you can can them! I chose to can them for the pantry.
If you go the canning route, you will need a second large stock pot filled with water. The first step is to sanitize your jars. Place your canning jars (I used 4-8 oz. jars), with lids and rings in the pot. Bring to a boil on high heat, cover and reduce heat to medium once it reaches the boil. Set a timer for 10-15 minutes. Once they have been sanitized, it’s important to keep them in the water until ready to fill and seal. Do not to touch the jars on the inside or the rims; same goes for the lids and rings; unless it’s with a sanitized tool. (They have canning tongs you can purchase, but I didn’t have those the first few times I canned. I just used regular old tongs and an oven mit – which was dicey – so be CAREFUL!) Anyway, once the 10-15 minutes is up, turn off the heat. Carefully extract one jar from the water, dumping out any water back into the pot. Pour the jam directly into the jar. (I didn’t use a funnel or anything, I was able to go straight into the jar. But if you need a funnel, make sure you sanitize it too.) Then pull out the lid from the hot water using tongs, and place directly onto the jam-filled jar. Next once again using your tongs pull out the ring directly from the hot water, and place it on the jam-filled jar. It takes some patience, but it’s so worth it to save the valuable jam from spoiling! Secure the ring using oven mits or towels and set aside. Complete these steps for the remaining jam. I had a little left – probably 4 oz. that I put into a clean jar in the fridge, for immediate use.
Once all the jars are filled and the lids are screwed on tight, place them BACK in the stockpot full of water and boil again for 15 minutes with a lid on the pot. It will be messy. I used towels to stop some of the excessive sputtering and steaming. Once the 15 minutes is up, turn off the heat and allow the water to stop bubbling. Remove the lid and carefully remove the filled jars from the pot. As they cool on the counter, you will hear a tiny little metal “ding” when the lid seals and protects your jam from spoiling. They are now safe to store in the pantry! NOTE: If you go to use your jam in a week, or a couple months time and that little dimple is back UP, don’t eat the jam! That means the seal was broken and bacteria is growing – even if you can’t see it. Happy jam making!