Last week I tried the most delicious little snacks. They tasted like a cross between peanut brittle and a sweet peanut butter granola bar. Often when I taste something like this that I instantly fall in love with, I find myself wanting to try to recreate it in my kitchen. So of course that’s exactly what I did and whoa… these are awesomely addicting. Even better, they only have 3 ingredients: peanuts, sugar and salt.
It’s hard to get simpler than 3 ingredients, and quite honestly these look like they took more effort than they did. The peanuts get roasted and ground, while the sugar gets melted down to a liquid. A pinch of salt gets tossed into the sugar, then toss the peanuts in. Almost immediately you’ll have a big gooey ball of sweet peanuts. Next you just need to flatten it out with a rolling pin and score it with a knife so it’s easier to to break into semi-regular pieces.
There’s a little bit of a waiting game involved, about a half hour or so. But oh boy, once they’re cooled you’re going to find yourself looking for reasons to visit the kitchen… just a tiny piece won’t hurt. Pretty soon half the bars are gone. What I love about these is they have that great peanut flavor with a hint of salt that traditional peanut brittle—although these are definitely sweeter—but they won’t break your teeth off. The sugar just mingles among the little peanut bits which allows them to stay stiff, but it’s quite easy to break off a piece. I’ll be packing these puppies up to go to work with me, because if I leave them at the house, I might just turn into peanut brittle.
This roasted and ground peanut brittle recipe
inspired by original west african peanut brittle recipe
makes about 24 2″x1″ pieces.
1 cup sugar
1 1/3 cup peanuts, roasted and ground
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
Prepare a baking sheet or cutting board with parchment and set aside.
Roast peanuts in a 300° oven for 7-10 minutes. Let cool.
Toss peanuts in food processor and give it a few whirls, until the peanuts are medium to finely ground.
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add sugar to the skillet and spread it out evenly using a silicone spatula. Watch closely as the sugar will start to melt. Stir often and watch it as it melts into a liquid. about 12-15 minutes.
As your stirring, scrape unmelted sugar from the spatula, using a knife, add it to the melted sugar and mix it in. Continue to mix until all the sugar has completely melted. If the sugar begins to smoke, briefly raise it from the heat, stirring and reduce the heat slightly.
When the mixture is completely melted, add the salt and cayenne pepper if using.
Add the nuts and mix until they are well-coated with the melted sugar and stick together in a ball.
Put the mixture on your prepared parchment. Using a dry rolling pin or a round bottle, roll it out in the shape of a rectangle, about 1/5 inch in thickness. Work fast while the sugar still is warm, soft and easy to work with.
Using a medium to large knife, cut the brittle into about 1-inch strips from top to bottom, then cut across each strip into the desired portions. Let cool for at least a half hour. Enjoy!