I recently signed up for The Produce Box, which is a weekly delivery of produce from local farms. I had tried it years ago, but we ended up receiving more produce than the two of us could eat each week. Since then The Produce Box has made some changes, and now we can order a smaller box that’s just right.
This week there were raw peanuts in our box, and the instructions said they shouldn’t be eaten raw. I decided to try boiling them thanks to some suggestions over on instagram. I’d never had boiled peanuts before, but apparently they’re a southern delicacy. I wasn’t sure what to expect, and the peanuts smelled kind of icky while they were boiling. After 2 hours I cracked one open and tried it. I couldn’t decide if I liked it, so I tried a few more. Then I ate a whole bowlful. The verdict is in—yum. The peanuts get soft and chewy and are surrounded by salty peanut juice inside the shell. That description doesn’t sound very appetizing, so you’ll just have to trust me on this one.
1 pound of raw “green” peanuts (not the color green, but fresh raw peanuts)
1/4 cup kosher salt (or 2 Tbsp table salt)
4 cups water
2 Tbsp Old Bay Seasoning, smoked paprika, shrimp boil mix, or even star anise (optional)
Thoroughly rinse raw unshelled peanuts in water. Put water, salt, seasoning (if desired), peanuts in a large stockpot. Bring to a low boil. Cover and reduce the heat just enough to maintain a low boil. Boil for 2 to 3 hours or longer (some boil their peanuts all day), until peanuts reach desired level of softness. Drain. Eat up within a couple of days. Boiled peanuts don’t save as well as dry.