The brown house on Malraux Drive in Vienna, Virginia - that's where I first remember my mom serving peanut butter balls. I was maybe four years old, and had just come in from playing in the yard and I wanted a snack. Mom served the peanut butter balls with a nice cold glass of milk - yum! Sadly, they turned out to be a somewhat rare treat, though they are terribly easy to make.
Peanut butter balls and the Lego piece in the patio are some of the spotty memories (I was very young when we lived there) I have about the brown house. Yes, a Lego piece in the patio, not on the patio. One summer my dad decided to build a patio, complete with a built-in barbecue grill in the backyard. He hired some workers to pour the concrete, and I remember staring at the guys from the sliding glass door as they worked, smoothing the concrete. Little me wondered what would happen if I threw something onto the inviting gray expanse. Hmmm, what was nearby? Ahhhh, my Lego set! Grabbing a red 1X2 brick, I tossed it onto the wet concrete, right in front of one of the kneeling workers. He looked at me, and very deliberately patted the Lego piece into the concrete and buried it. I thought that was super cool, but decided to not throw anything else in case mom or dad caught me.
I hadn't thought about the brown house for many years; we moved to a different house when I was six. Then one day in 2001 I was chatting on the telephone with my dad, and he asked me if I'd been following the Robert Hanssen spy case. It turned out Hanssen and his family lived in my old brown house on Malraux Drive - my dad realized it when the newspaper he was reading featured a picture of the house! I wonder if Mrs. Hanssen ever made peanut butter balls...
All you need for this easy and delicious recipe: three ingredients, a bowl, a measuring cup, a piece of waxed paper, a spoon, cooking spray, and a refrigerator!
The three ingredients:
Measure the dry milk and put into the bowl. Next, pour (or squeeze, if you're using a honey bear) the honey into the measuring cup; add to bowl. Grab your spoon and glop the peanut butter into the measuring cup; add to bowl. Mix thoroughly.
If you haven't already, wash your hands. Spray a little of the cooking spray onto your hands; use enough to make your hands greasy but not dripping.
Plunge your hands into the mixing bowl and grab enough of the mix to form an approximately 1 inch ball. (This is why you want the cooking spray on your hands, it makes it a little easier to roll the mix.) Put ball onto waxed paper, repeat until the mix is gone (add cooking spray to your hands as necessary).
Put the waxed paper containing the balls of peanutty goodness into the refrigerator, let chill for at least half an hour before eating. Store in refrigerator.
Using reduced fat peanut butter is not recommended, it makes the balls very hard and not nearly as tasty.
I have no idea how long these can be stored safely since they generally aren't around longer than a day at my home.
The recipe is from my mom's green index card box of recipes.