A quick glance at this recipe for peanut brittle could make one think that it is ridiculously simple. Boiling and stirring three ingredients does seem to be easy. However, things aren’t always what they seem.
I’m not trying to discourage readers from trying this recipe, I simply am offering a word of advice before beginning. Patience and caution are needed when making peanut brittle. It takes time to get the sugar to the correct color, and once the peanuts are added the cook needs to act quickly. Getting the mixture spread into a thin layer is crucial. Thick pieces of brittle cannot be bitten by human teeth (or at least shouldn’t be).
I highly recommend using lightly salted peanuts in this recipe. The salt helps to balance the sweetness of the brittle, making a cloyingly sweet candy into something more enjoyable.
3 cups sugar
1-1/2 cups water
1-1/2 cups lightly salted peanuts
Line a baking sheet with a piece of buttered parchment paper. Coat a spatula in butter. Set both aside.
Rub the inside of a medium saucepot with oil. Combine sugar and water in pot over high heat, stirring with a wooden spoon. Bring to a boil, cover and allow to cook without stirring for 3 minutes. Remove cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook until the liquid is a pale amber color. Add peanuts, stirring quickly, as the mixture will begin to thicken immediately.
Using buttered spatula, transfer brittle from pot to prepared baking sheet. Spread into a thin layer quickly. Allow to cool completely. Break into pieces.