Sunday, December 28, 2014

Peanut Brittle

Aka:

THE BEST NUT BRITTLE YOU’LL EVER MAKE: EASY, DELICIOUS, AND DONE IN UNDER 30 MINUTES.




1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 1/2 cups salted peanuts
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Directions
1) Spray a wooden spoon (or other heat-proof stirring implement) with non-stick cooking spray. Lightly grease a baking sheet, or line it with parchment.
2) Mix together the sugar and corn syrup in a large microwave-safe bowl and stir until well combined; the mixture will be stiff and hard to stir. Be sure to use a large enough bowl; the sugar/corn syrup should fill it no more than 1/4 to 1/3 full.
3) Microwave the sugar mixture uncovered on high power for 5 minutes; it will bubble vigorously.
4) Add the peanuts and butter, and stir well to combine. Speed is key! The cooler the mixture becomes the harder it will be to stir.
5) Replace the bowl in the microwave and cook on high for 2 to 4 minutes, until the mixture turns a nice medium-brown caramel color. Start watching carefully around the 2-minute mark, and remove when the caramel color is achieved.
6) Add the baking soda and vanilla. The mixture will bubble furiously upon the addition of these ingredients — this is what gives the candy its hallmark airy texture. (This is also why you need to use a large bowl.) Stir quickly to combine. The finished mixture will look creamy and caramelized.
7) Working quickly, pour the mixture onto your prepared baking sheet and spread it as evenly as possible. If you end up with an uneven spread, don't worry — the candy should still set up nicely, even in the thicker areas.
8) Once the brittle has set and cooled (30 to 60 minutes), break it into pieces.
Yield: about 3 dozen pieces.

NOTES:
  • There are lots of pictures of every step over here at King Arthur Flour.
  • Highly recommended!  This reminded me of the peanut brittle Grandpa used to make every Christmas but so much easier in the microwave.
  • Mine took about 10 minutes longer in my ancient microwave, but I just kept stirring and checking every minute or two until it was the right color.
  • It's worth noting that even though I used a clear glass bowl I had to take it out and look inside the bowl at the color.  It was definitely a different color in the middle of the bowl than on the edges.  Weird eh?  Even so, it would have overcooked had I waited until the outside color were dark enough.
  • They aren't kidding when they say it goes fast - be prepared.  I poured this on my room temperature baking sheet and barely got it spread before it set.  Note to self: next time, try warming up the pan a bit.

1 comment:

Holly Gerardi said...

Heed the notes! Mine took just a bit over 4 minutes.