When Good Food Goes Bad Part V: Cooking with Peeps

By Andrea Karim on 7 April 2007 (Updated 10 June 2007) 13 comments

I suppose defining Peeps, a favorite of my childhood, as "good" food that goes bad, might be a bit of a stretch.

Those marshmallow chicks that come in an array of unnatural colors go stale REALLY quickly. You open the pack, and about five minutes later, they're as good as inedible.

Despite the fact that we are all diabetics, my mum still buys each of her offspring a pack of Peeps every year. I'll nibble one or two, realizing that they're not nearly as sweet as I remember them. But honestly, I can't eat the whole box, so I usually end up throwing them away. That, and I have issues with anthropomorphic foods, meaning that I only ever eat the chocolate bunny (poor bunny!) once someone else threatens to take it away from me.

Anyway, it's my mother's thoughtfulness that leaves me with two boxes of uneaten Peeps this Easter Sunday. Thank goodness a local chef has come up with a way to prevent waste and consume strange dishes using the poor, innocent, marshmallow chicks.

Seattle chef Jason Wilson had the brilliant idea of melting down the Peeps and pretending that they are actually edible. Below is one of the recipes, the only frugal one to be found. The other recipes involve truffle oil and foie gras, two ingedients that no self-respecting chef would cook without, especially now that arugula has fallen out of favor, but certainly not two items that most people have simply lying around the house. Hence, I'm only posting the frugal ones, but check out Wilson's recipe for Green Eggs and Ham at Weekend America's site. You can download and listen to the show's podcast here.

Peep Fondue

Ingredients:
2 rows of Peeps, one blue, one yellow
1 tbsp. Butter
1/3 cup water
1/2 pear, sliced
1/2 apple, sliced
chocolate cookies
cheese, sliced into logs

Procedure:
In a saucepot on low heat, slowly melt the Peeps with the butter and water, stirring consistently. When Peeps are melted and fondue is ready, serve in a fondue pot, keeping mixture warm because it will become solid if left to be cold.

Terri's Peep Hut also offers up some fun, if more conventional, takes on how to use up Peeps for all seasons. My personal favorite:

Peepuccino

Dissolve one peep in a very hot cup of black coffee – species and color
of peep is of your choosing. Stir until frothy.

Geekbabe also has some excellent Peeps links.

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Will Chen's picture

Thanks for the recipe Andrea.  I've got lots of peeps around and I really didn't know what to do with them...

Guest's picture
Guest

Here's another idea of something to do with your peeps... Peep Wars. It's a cheap (especially if you already have a package of peeps lying around, year old ones still work too) way to have some family fun.


Gather up some friends and enough peeps so that everyone could have two. Take toothpicks (preferably the colored ones to help distinguish which peep is your contender) and inserted them as arms into your chick-like friend. Then take a microwaveable plate and some wax paper (the wax paper is to help on the cleanup), seting up the peeps on top within 2 inches of each other. You can do Peep Wars tournament style (one on one and then a winners' round) OR all at once (with a large enought plate). Then set your microwave for no more than 30 seconds and watch they fight to the death. The winner is whomevers peeps makes it out unscathed. Who knew you could have so much fun with a dollar!

Guest's picture
Linda

I seriously didn't know they were called Peeps because I don't like sweets and I don't celebrate Easter. But at my first official Easter dinner last night, my friend told me that she used to sandwich the peep between two graham crackers and microwave it, making a s'more kind of treat. Only thing is they poof up really fast so some experimentation may be necessary.

Andrea Karim's picture

I can only imagine how dangerous it can be to microwave Peeps. I'll bet that the sugar on the outside could burn fairly easily, too. I'd recommend caution when nuking those little guys.

Guest's picture
Guest

I would recommend Rice Krispie Treats made with Peeps instead of marshmallows...slightly more sugary than the normal blend, but in technicolor! I bought a couple boxes on clearance several years ago just to try it out and it was well worth the effort!

Guest's picture
Guest

I was on a low budget this year so bought a ton of these things as they were on for three for a dollar! I'm going to try it with coffee. Thanks again.

Guest's picture

I've never been tempted to buy any peeps, just because of the insane amount of food coloring that goes into them. But now ... muahahahahaaaa ... these ideas are too good and too funny to pass up. Easter just passed, so I'm sure there are some out there on clearance!

Andrea Karim's picture

Turns out that Cadbury Eggs are shrinking, but Cadbury wants to blame it on you getting fat. Ha!

 

Guest's picture
mofar the minotaur

an·thro·po·mor·phic

1. ascribing human form or attributes to a being or thing not human, esp. to a deity.
2. resembling or made to resemble a human form: an anthropomorphic carving.

Pardon but last I checked peeps are marshmellow ckicks not marshmellow people. :p

Andrea Karim's picture

And I should clarify. Indeed, peeps are not in human form. But anything with a sort-of face, I assign human emotions, including stuffed animals. Perhaps this doesn't qualify as anthropomorphic, but I can't think of a good word for it. If you know one, please do tell me what it is. Would "lifelike" be a better term, even though Peeps don't REALLY look alive.

Chickens probably experience a limited range of emotions, but I take one look at a Peep and think "He knows I'm going to eat him. And he's scared of me."

Guest's picture
mofar the minotaur

"anything with a sort-of face, I assign human emotions"
last I checked emotions are an attribute, it's just that how I read it I didn't see any human qualities given. although in retrospect "poor bunny!" should have tipped me off to feelings of pity to a scared and defenseless creature.

Andrea Karim's picture

Yes, assuming that I use words in accordance with their actual meaning is a common mistake among my readers. Don't make it again. :)

Andrea Karim's picture

There are so many great sites the have peep-cooking recipes. Google it, I highly recommend the Peep Kabobs!