A GIVEAWAY! My New Favorite Gadget: The Van Vacter PBJ Bagel Knife

Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Peanut Butter Man and I have a long-standing disagreement about the best way to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. He uses a butter knife to spread the jelly on one slice of bread, then cleans the knife on the other slice of bread before dipping it in the peanut butter. I spread the peanut butter first, then stick the knife back into the peanut butter to get a little snack to tide me over until my sandwich is ready. Then I tip the jelly jar and usually it drips some out on top of the peanut butter, or if it needs a bit of help I'll grab a spoon. I'll smear the jelly around with my freshly-licked knife, cut the sandwich in half, and enjoy my little bit of heaven.

I have to admit, when I first saw this knife I was skeptical. Let's face it, there are new gadgets and gizmos every day, all proclaiming to be the most awesome things since sliced bread, and most of them end up either in the trash or forgotten in the junk drawer.

After just one use I was hooked. This knife is amazing! Its wavy blade makes it the perfect tool with runny peanut butter--no more drips all over the outside of the jar or on my plate. It works great with cold, stiff peanut butter from the fridge, too. No need for jelly spoons--it holds the jelly just as well as it holds the runny peanut butter.

I love the tip of the knife because it's the perfect shape for scraping the last bits of goodness from the bottom of the jar. The serrated edge cut through soft white bread as neatly and easily as it cut through a bagel. And the handle is perfect: not slippery, not heavy, not too skinny. This knife is also awesome for cream cheese, mayonnaise, or just about anything else you might want to spread on bread.

You can see more about this knife and the complete line of Van Vacter products on their website. If I've convinced you that you can't make it through another PB&J without one of these knives, you can get them from Sur La Table, Williams-Sonoma, and Broadway Panhandler.

I'm very excited because Van Vacter gave me a knife to give away to one of you! Here's how to enter:

1. Leave a comment on this post telling how you make a PBJ
2. You must have a mailing address in the U.S.
3. Earn a second entry by blogging about this giveaway, including a link back to this post; and leave a second comment here with the URL of your post
4. Comments can be posted through October 5, 2008. On October 6 I'll use the randomizer thingie and select a winner.


Mike Golch said...

I like making mine on toast.

Pam Hoffman said...

I haven't made myself a peanut butter & jelly sandwich in years!

I tell you, reading your article makes me hungry for one though!

I would love to try out this fine tool you describe. email me if I win: pamhoffman at cox dot net!

Thank you for the education.

Oh, I think I probably worked the sandwich like the 'Peanut Butter Man' does (only peanut butter first!) and I definitely would cut diagonally in half.

I'll come back and tell you when I make another one, probably soon since we bought some Smuckers Strawberry preserves and they are really yummy and now I'm hungry.



Pam Hoffman

RobMonroe said...

My family is on the "healthy" side of PB&J right now - we eat it in a tortilla wrap! I cover the wrap with Peanut Butter and then slap a glob of jelly in the middle. There is always "too much" peanut butter to fit, so it's like two treats at once!

Mrs.Kwitty said...

That is a pretty cool little gadget! I especially like that it is shaped for getting to the bottom of the jars..good feature!

I am a huge PB&J fan--I like mine on fresh vienna bread--with a thin spread of butter on each piece, then thick PB on one side and a light coating of raspberry or strawberry jelly on the other (no fruity clumps). Cut from corner to corner and serve with some fresh Lay's classic chips and a glass of milk! Mmmm, guess what I'm having for lunch today! lol

Smiles, Karen

convo @ misseskwittys.etsy.com

luvikavi said...

I normally lightly toast my bread in the toaster since it makes the peanut butter spread easier, I guess its the heat :) I put jelly on one side and peanut butter on the other. I always use two separate knives, I really don't like using the same knife. BTW peanut butter and jelly on white bread tastes so much better, although I eat other sandwiches on wheat or multi grain belt

I will post this awesome entry on my site :) www.kavitameanspoetryinblogspot.com

luvikavi said...


Here is a link to my blog :)

HammelmanArt said...

I am wedded to the traditional PBJ of my childhood and my children's. White bread is best but any will do. For myself, I spread the peanut butter first then the grape jelly using the same knife. I don't take time to cut it!

For the boys' preschool years, I put on extra to be sure to reach the crusts that I would be eating. For their school lunch, every day for the first 7 years (before they got to middle school and switched to pizza), I spread the peanut butter on both sides to prevent the grape jelly from soaking into the bread.

At age 50+ I can say that I don't think there has ever been a day when I didn't have peanut butter and grape jelly in my home and on my boat. The knife looks like it will have to join the crew.

Anonymous said...

My favorite lunch..peanut buuter surprise..

make one PB and J
one PB and Bannana
one peantut butter and honey
wrap in shrik wrap individually
place in brown paper bag

when hungry reach into the bag with out looking

Rob said...

I'm striving for less carb intake, so on the rare occasions I have a (quasi) traditional PBJ sammich, I make mine with whole wheat, high-fiber bread, natural (no sugar-added) PB, and just a dab of low-sugar strawberry preserves. Like you, I tend to spread the "jelly" part first, wipe off the knife, then dig into the PB, with a hefty dollop at the end that never quite makes it to the bread...

Most often though, when I'm hankering for kind of quick treat, I just go for a plain old heaping spoonful (okay, usually two) of straight PB. Yum!

Pamela Plumley said...

I just had one tonight in fact! I usually just smear on the peanut butter on slice of bread, nice and thick, then the jelly on the other slice of bread. (Doesn't everyone!?)
Then, if it's for my husband or daughter, I cut it diagonally. If it's for me, I eat off the crusts, then the main section that's left! More fun that way!
Thanks for the chance to win!

CarrieDee said...

PBj's are my absolute favorite!! :)


Anonymous said...

I alternate between a creamy and a crunchy peanut butter but the constant is that I slather it good and thick on both slices of bread and try not to miss any spots at all. Then I put jelly or jam on just one of the slices. That keeps my sandwich from getting soggy. Then I like to cut it into baby sandwiches, sometimes little squares, sometimes little triangles. I have fun with my food, okay? Either that or I've been a mom too long.

Christine said...

The best PB&J sandwiches are ones that we make on our fresh from the maker, hot bread! My all time favorite bread is the orange cranberry bread, and to put peanut butter and strawberry jelly on it, mmmmmmmmmm mmmmmmm!

I saw that knife (can they really call it a knife?) on the website the other day. Those are some kick@$$ tools on there! I want all of them.. hehehe

Brimful Curiosities said...

My daughter (and hubbie) devour PB&J's! I typically butter one piece of whole wheat bread and put jelly on it. I put peanut butter (smooth) on the other and then put the two pieces together. We cut diagonally. YUM!

Reeni said...

I do the same thing as you. I spread the PB and then I lick the knife and use a spoon for the jelly. Jelly slides off a knife, a spoon works so much better!! Cool knife!!!! I have a really delicous recipe for PB and Jelly Muffins on my blog, they are peanut butter muffins with a jelly filling.

Laurabudcody said...

My son loves PB&J's but we do baby sized ones for him using only one piece of bread with peanut butter on one side and jelly on the other half. Smash together, take off crust and he's a happy boy!

Topher said...

I actually like smooth PB w/strawberry jam, occasionally with a sliced banana thrown in there, toasted on a george forman


jenny said...

one of the pb&j i like is with blackberry jam

jceko77 said...

I use a butter knife. I spread PB on one slice and jelly on the other.

Beadedtail said...

I always like a little bread with my Peanut butter and Jelly :)...I am with "The Peanut Butter Man", when making a PB&J, I always clean my butter knife on the other piece of bread before dipping it into the Jelly.

Amy - Mom Spark said...

I use a butter knife, pb on one side and jelly on the other. Oh, must be white bread!

momspark [at] gmail [dot] com

Sara said...

I follow your man's method.. PB one one side, jelly on the other!