All I Want for Christmas is Candy: Peanut Brittle


by Sara Mead

Another delicious homemade Christmas candy treat. Here’s a recipe from Joy of Cooking

Peanut or Nut Brittle

about 2 pounds

Have a ready paid of clean white cotton gloves. It is best to use raw nuts and cook them in the syrup. Should only roasted nuts be available, add them after the syrup is cooked. In this case the candy is best if aged 24 hours. If the nuts are salted, rub them between paper towels and omit salt from the recipe. This recipe makes a tender clear brittle. For a porous one, combine 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar with the sugar, and sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of soda all over the hot syrup just before pouring. Bring to a boil in a large heavy pan: 

     1 cup water

>Remove from heat and stir in until dissolved:

      2 cups sugar

Then add and stir in: 

      1 cup corn syrup

Cook to hard-ball stage, 250 degrees, then add: 

     2 cups ran Spanish peanuts

     1 teaspoon salt

Stir occasionally to submerge any exposed nuts so that they cook thoroughly and so the candy does not burn. Cook to almost hard-cracked stage, 295 degrees. Remove from heat. Stir in lightly: 

     1 to 3 tablespoons butter

     1/4 teaspoon baking soda

     (1 teaspoon vanilla)

Pour onto a well-buttered slab at once, scraping out bottom of pan. Spread mixture rapidly with a spatula. At this point, don the cotton gloves. Loosen the mass from the slab with a scraper, reverse it and, discarding the scraper, stretch and pull the brittle so thin that you can see through it. When cool, crack into eating-size pieces and store at once in a tightly covered tin. 


One response to “All I Want for Christmas is Candy: Peanut Brittle

  1. The purpose of the corn syrup is to prevent the sucrose from crystallizing. It is a weird molecule that doesn’t fit into the same crystal matrix.

    Which is a physics way of saying that I seriously doubt you need a whole cup of the stuff. Probably a tablespoon or two would be plenty.

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