Sweet and Spicy Peanut Brittle

Peanut brittle recipeI wonder who invented peanut brittle. It's kind of a weird idea, right? I imagine they said to themselves, "Man, I sure do love peanuts but I hate how smooth and creamy peanut butter is. I want the opposite of peanut butter. I want peanuts showcased in a super hard crunchy candy. Hmmmmmm."

And then peanut brittle was born. And somehow over the years peanut brittle has become a kind of holiday candy staple. You don't eat peanut brittle in July. That's just crazy talk. It's a December thing. Sweet and spicy peanut brittleSweet and Spicy Peanut Brittle

3 cups peanuts (dry roasted)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 cup water
1 cup light corn syrup
2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon baking soda

In a bowl combine the peanuts, cinnamon and cayenne. Set aside. In a pot combine the water, corn syrup, sugar and salt. Stir to dissolve over high heat. Use a candy thermometer and wait until the mixture reaches 290°F to 300°F degrees. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract and peanuts. Then stir in the baking soda (this will cause the mixture to foam). Quickly pour the mixture out onto a silpat mat or a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Use a spatula to spread the mixture as thin as you like. Allow to cool and then crack into pieces.
Homemade peanut brittleYou have to work quickly once the mixture has almost reach the "hard crack" stage. But be careful! I dropped a spoon at one point and got a tiny drop of the hot mixture on my pinky finger. And now I have a gross blister. It hurt! (You probably didn't want to know that, huh?) Happy candy making! xo. Emma

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