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Erika's famous Peanut Brittle Recipe

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This recipe for Erika's famous Peanut Brittle, by , is from The Friends and Family Cookbook Project, one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We help families or individuals create heirloom cookbook treasures.

Contributor:  
Contributor:  
Erika Manning
Added: Saturday, January 17, 2009

Category:
Category:

Ingredients:  
Ingredients:  
1 cup corn syrup
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
2 cups peanuts
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tbsp butter

Directions:
Directions:
Use a fairly heavy, 2 1/2 to 3 quart saucepan. Stainless steel with a copper clad bottom is ideal. Do not use an all aluminum pan. You will likely get "hot spots" which cause burning before you know it. Place corn syrup and water into the pan over medium-high heat. After it warms up, but before it begins to boil, stir in the sugar. Bring to full boil, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. Insert candy thermometer after a few minutes. When the temperature reaches 250 degrees F, add the peanuts and salt and stir. Bring the mixture back to a full boil. Now, in this phase, the correct amount of stirring is of critical importance. When the temperature reaches 300 degrees remove the pan from the heat immediately. You may do this at 290 degrees, if the desired level of brownness has been reached. Do not let it go above 300 degrees, or the finished product may develop a weak, spongy structure. Immediately after removing the pan from the heat, add the butter and vanilla extract, and stir (carefully-it's HOT ! )until the butter is melted. Sprinkle the baking soda over the surface of the mixture and stir. The mixture will begin to foam up and double in volume. Now you need a clean, smooth, flat surface to pour the mixture onto. A marble pastry board is ideal, as the marble allows the candy to cool slowly enough so you have time to stretch it before it hardens. You may use a large baking sheet, but you will have to work quickly because the candy will cool and harden more rapidly. Prepare the surface ahead of time by coating it with butter or non-stick cooking spray. Immediately after stirring in the baking soda, pour the hot mixture onto the surface. Don't try to spread the mixture too much with your wooden spoon. You will end up scraping the peanuts into one place. Instead, put on a pair of cotton gloves, and put a pair of plastic food handling gloves over the cotton gloves. Coat the plastic gloves with butter, paying special attention to the fingers. Now, use a spatula to loosen the candy from the cooling surface, then pick it up and flip it over. Keep in mind that the candy is still very hot, and can melt the plastic gloves, so try to use a light touch, and handle the candy by the outside edges, which cool more rapidly. Flipping reduces the surface contact and allows for easier stretching of the solidifying mass. Stretch until the candy becomes thin, but without too many holes. The edges may have to be broken to allow them to stretch to the desired thinness. Once stretched, leave the candy alone to cool, which will take a couple of hours. After cooling, the peanut brittle can be broken up by hand, or by whacking it with the handle of a butter knife (watch out for flying pieces). Store the peanut brittle in airtight containers. If you use plastic bags, you may want to double bag it. The candy can have some sharp edges that tend to poke through.   

Personal Notes:
Personal Notes:
If you follow the directions to a "T" you will not find a better peanut butter brittle. After a couple times of making this you will know just by the color. mmm...good

 

 

 

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