I asked my mom what I could do for a gift for dad this Christmas. My Dad has Alzheimer’s. His short term memory is shot. Not so sure about the long term memory either. He lives in the moment, the exact moment and that is it. Anyways, being the foodie I am she said he would like Peanut Brittle and a Chex Mix. At first I thought I could go to Seroogy’s (a local candy store) and get the Peanut Brittle there. Then I thought, why not, I will make it myself. I am not a candy person. So I wasn’t sure if I would succeed. I found this recipe on Epicurious and it worked perfectly! Dad won’t remember it minutes after he eats it but he sure will enjoy it while he is chomping on it!! 2013 UPDATE: This recipe continued to work for me this year. No changes in temperature. I still did the 260 for first boil and then 295 after adding the nuts and butter. My combination of nuts this year was 3 cups of salted roasted cashews and 1 cup salted pistachios. Once again, delicious! I happen to like this recipe a little too much. I may hold out in 2014 and make for 2015 or…maybe not!
3 cups sugar
2 cups water
3/4 cup light corn syrup
3/4 cup dark corn syrup
4 cups coarsely chopped salted roasted peanuts (I used 3 cups peanuts and 1 cup salted roasted cashews)
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter (I changed this from 2 Tablespoons to 3 Tablespoons)
1 Tablespoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1. Butter 2 heavy large baking sheets. (I used a jelly roll pan and a 13×9 cake pan – that worked fine)
2. Stir first 4 ingredients in heavy large saucepan (I used my Dutch Oven pan) over medium heat until sugar dissolves.
3. Increase heat to high and boil without stirring until candy thermometer registers 260 degrees, about 40 minutes. (It really takes about 40 minutes. I have a gas stove.) (Be sure it stays rapidly boiling)
4. Reduce heat to medium low. Mix in peanuts and butter and cook until thermometer registers 295 degrees, stirring constantly, about 15 minutes. (this really took 15 minutes of stirring constantly. I am glad Kent helped me with this)
5. Add baking soda and vanilla and stir briskly (mixture will foam up). IMMEDIATELY pour out onto prepared baking sheets, dividing evenly. Spread out brittle as thinly as possible.
6. Let stand until cold and hard. (about an hour)
7. When set, break brittle into pieces. IT IS DELICIOUS!!
8. Store in airtight containers at room temperature.
This was a success and I will NOT be going to Seroogy’s for dads gift. He will certainly have his moments of enjoying this Simple and Delicious confection!! 🙂