Did you think we were talking about pecans? No. We’re crazy about peanuts. (Yes, we know peanuts are a legume, not a “nut,” but that’s a story for another day.)
Peanut Brittle from Boston Brittle Company
Susan Zambito Engle was a Boston registered nurse/mom/candymaker back in the 60s. Like many good cooks, she started with a base recipe for peanut brittle and made it her own, in particular leaving out the corn syrup from the original recipe. She made brittle during the holidays and everyone expected it in their Christmas stockings. Fast forward a few decades and her son Mark Engle, now living in Marietta, started Boston Brittle Company. He uses his mom’s recipe for peanut brittle (tweaking it a little by adding cinnamon) to make two versions - cinnamon and cayenne. (There’s are cashew and pecan brittles, too.) When you meet Mark, he’ll tell you this is brittle that won’t stick to your teeth. And we agree. What we tasted was a brittle that was a lot like a praline in consistency. The pieces look exactly like you’d expect of peanut brittle but each bite is creamy as well as chock full of nuts. And there are the browned butter and caramelized sugar notes you expect. For those who love peanut brittle but want to spare their teeth, this is the solution.
$6 per 6-ounce container of peanut brittle, $8.50 for 6-ounce container of cashew or pecan brittle. Available at the Saturday Peachtree City Farmers Market, Peachtree Center Green Market when the season opens in April and Treat Love, 755 Virginia Avenue, Hapeville. facebook.com/BostonBrittle
Fried Peanuts from Georgia Fried Peanut Company
We’ve written about Georgia Fried Peanut Company before, the brainchild of John West whose family has been frying peanuts in the small southwest Georgia town of Edison since the 1970s. Their chocolate-covered deep fried peanut clusters are good but sometimes you just can’t beat the original, the unembellished deep fried peanuts themselves. That frying makes them just more satisfying that plain roasted peanuts. Of course, there’s an art to frying peanuts. A minute too long and they’re scorched and pretty much inedible. Done right, it’s hard not to eat the whole bag or jar at once. But since the Wests have been doing this for more than 40 years, they’ve got the formula just right. Buy the 8-ounce bottles if you are known for your ability to show restraint. Otherwise, we advise the 40-ounce jar. These peanuts just don’t last long at our house.
$14.99 for a 3-pack of 8-ounce bottles. Available online on Etsy at etsy.com/shop/GaFriedPeanutCo or $19.99 for a 4-pack of 18-ounce bags or $12.99 for the 40-ounce jar on Amazon. Or call to order 8-ounce bags direct, 229-366-3023.
Peanut Bites from Miss D’s Pralines & Popcorn
Walk in the main entrance of the Sweet Auburn Curb Market and you cannot miss Miss D’s New Orleans Style Candy. The booth is piled high with popcorn in savory and sweet flavors and pretty much every variety of pecan or peanut candy you can imagine. Everything is made right there at the market. Miss D is famous for her pralines, but we were drawn to the Peanut Bites. These 1-and-1/2-inch long rolls have a divinity-like filling, a coating of caramel and an outer shell of roasted peanuts. Remember Stuckey’s Pecan Rolls? Reimagine them with peanuts and you know why we loved them. Miss D is Dionne Grant, a New Orleans native who found her way to Atlanta and has become so successful, she’s now selling her popcorn and sweet treats at the Mercedes Benz Stadium. She’s going to make sure you walk away from her booth with some delicious treats and a great big hug.
$3.99 for a package of 5. Available at Miss D’s booth at the Sweet Auburn Curb Market. Look for them soon on UberEats and GrubHub. missdspraline.com/.
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