It's crazy when you can buy better treats in a tiny petrol station in Sierra Leone than you can in a massive supermarket back home. I'm staying in Freetown this week for a bit of training. We're in a hotel and getting some meals, but sometimes you just need a snack, don't you? So I walked up the road, found a petrol station and bought these for 5000 Leones, or about 80p (the crazy exchange rate being the reason I'm already a millionaire, despite only having been paid for a fraction of September).
Peanut butter and chocolate is an awesome combination (case in point: Peanut Butter M&Ms; Reece's Peanut Butter Cups). Peanut butter and crackers is an awesome combination (case in point: Peanut Butter Ritz Sandwiches; putting the stuff on Jacob's crackers). This week I even discovered it goes nicely on Cassava root. Peanut Butter on sweet biscuits, therefore, was bound to work. And it so totally does.
Peanut Butter Oreos start off with the standard Oreo top and bottom, so a vaguely chocolate flavoured, round disk that has just the right level of softness without being either crispy or soggy. However, it's inside that these get interesting. These are a 'double delight' flavour, which means the central cream is actually two different flavours, chocolate and peanut butter. These aren't mingled together, but rather left side by side so, in theory, you could cut one of these Oreos in half and eat the chocolate and peanut butter bits separately. Because they're side by side, rather than one on top of the other, this would be a bit messy though, and is not recommended when eating in bed in front of a fan... Oreos in general are a bit crumbly, but at least they're so dark that you can see the crumbs easily, and pick them up before the ants get them.
The things that surprised me most about these was how peanut buttery they WEREN'T. I was expecting something with a real creamy, peanutty kick, but while you can taste the nuttiness, it's quite subtle because there's also a chocolate crème in there too. If you eat it on its own (by scooping a bit out with your figure)it's a much more pronounced flavour, so it must just be that when it's combined with the chocolate crème and chocolate biscuit halves, they dilute it somewhat. (The peanut butter crème is the paler of the two: it looks almost like normal Oreo filling, and at first I thought these were half normal, half peanut butter, rather than half chocolate, half peanut butter).
Some people do weird things with their Oreos. With the exception of making mine into mini cheesecakes (split a white chocolate covered one, top with Philadelphia) I tend to eat them straight up. I don't split them in half and lick out the middle, or dunk them in my milk. Normally I don't think it makes that much of a difference to the final flavour, but with these I think it would. The cookie parts have such a diluting / balancing out effect on the crème that to remove those and eat the centre separately would totally change the taste. Given that in doing so you'd make it stronger, whether or not you'd prefer them like this depends on how much you like peanuts... The ingredients list includes 'peanut butter', which tends to be roasted peanuts, brown cane sugar, palm oil and sea salt (or some variation thereof for low fat/sugar varieties), so these definitely do include peanuts, and the flavour is distinctly of these, rather than some generic nut.
Despite the flavour changes, these follow the standard Oreo model. This means the fillings are thick and creamy, and the biscuits are a cross between a cookie and a wafer. I know they've had years to perfect it, but I really do like the consistency of Oreos. The ratio of filling to cookie is spot on, and the crème always ends a sensible distance from the edge, so even if you press down on them, it doesn't squidge out at the sides.
These won't be for you if you actively dislike peanut butter, but equally you don't have to be its biggest fan, as it's more of a hint of a flavour than a full on assault on your taste buds. They're less peanutty than Reece's, for example, and might be a good option for anyone who finds normal Oreos too sweet as these have more of a salty kick to them (making them better than normal chocolate stuffed ones which can get a bit sickly in large quantities. Like when you eat a couple of packets in one go).
On my Oreo ranking scale, I would rate these well above normal Oreos (over exposure has made them boring) but below the chocolate covered ones (extra chocolate, plus the fact the coverings contain the crumbs somewhat, both get bonus points). Overall, an excellent addition to the Oreo family. Nuts and chocolate and Oreos clearly work. My next request? How about a Nutella Oreo...
These are somewhat similar to the Reece's Peanut Butter Cookies you can buy in Krispy Kreme, except they're Oreos, so they're perfect in every way.
In the UK, keep an eye on
or Selfridges food hall, or even maybe a Pound shop - I've seen some unusual flavours in the Manchester ones in my time.
Or you could just fly down to West Africa if you're desperate. The weather's quite nice here at the moment.