Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Homemade peanut butter

I know, I know. Why is the girl who doesn't like peanut butter making...peanut butter? Let me explain. You've all heard me rave about my local CSA. For our last box of the season, we received about 2 pounds of Virginia peanuts. Let's be honest here - I wasn't going to touch a bit of those peanuts since I don't like them. And what was my husband going to do with two pounds of them?  Plus, Stephanie from Brownies and Blondies challenged the What's Baking members to create a homemade version of a convenience item in February. That was the inspiration I needed.

My husband tried eating a raw peanut and wasn't impressed. I told him that he needed to roast them at a minimum to bring out the flavor, and then I got an idea - I could make my own peanut butter. He likes buying all natural peanut butters and always supports a local peanut butter vendor at our farmer's market, so I thought it would be fun to try making some at home. Even better yet, I wouldn't have to taste test any so I wouldn't be inhaling any calories this time around. Sounded like a plan to me.

I found Alton Brown's recipe online and found this to be super easy. The hardest part was shelling all the peanuts. I think that process alone took an hour and a half, so let me know if there is a better way to do this!

My husband really loved this homemade peanut butter and was happy that he got to customize it to his palate. We used a local honey to sweeten it, but you can use any kind you like. Next time, I may pull out the lazy card and just buy some pre-roasted peanuts from the grocery store and make peanut butter that way.

Homemade peanut butter
  • 15 ounces shelled and skinned roasted peanuts, recipe follows
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons honey
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons peanut oil (I used canola)
In the bowl of a food processor, add the peanuts, salt and honey. Process for 1 minute. Stop the machine to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Put the lid back on and process again while slowly drizzling in the oil. Keep blending until the mixture is smooth, 1-1/2 to 2 minutes. If the mixture is still too chunky, keep processing. You may add a tad more oil if needed. Store the peanut butter in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 months.

Roasted peanuts
  • 2 pounds in-shell raw peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil (I used canola)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons kosher salt
Roasted peanuts directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Rinse the peanuts in cold water to remove dirt and other grime. Pat the peanuts dry, place in a large bowl, and toss with the oil and salt until well coated.

Place the peanuts on 2 sheet pans and make sure that they are in a single layer. Roast in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, and rotate the pans halfway through cooking.

Once the peanuts have cooled, remove shells and skins and discard.

Yield: About 1-1/2 cups of peanut butter 

Source: Alton Brown, via the Food Network



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