Many Vietnamese people fled their home country after the Vietnam War and ended up in Louisiana. The Vietnamese were exposed to new, local foods resulting in some current mainstays of Vietnamese cuisine, such as Cajun crawfish boil, chicory in Vietnamese coffee and of course, boiled peanuts.
These are popularly boiled with just salt, or with Cajun spices, but in this recipe we’re going to keep it simple and only use salt.
Speaking of peanuts, check out the cutest peanut / my nephew here on our walk:
This was yet another hot summer day in Los Angeles. We took our time walking through the neighborhood and some restaurants, leaving footprints on the mattress store’s window (sorry!) and ended up in a bird store.
There were some beautiful birds there that the little dude just stared at the entire time in silence. The shopkeeper warned us to be careful to not get too close to avoid getting bitten. “You’d get in big trouble with the wife if that happened!” I laughed it off, “Yeah, if only I had a wife.” She scrambled for a reply, “Oh, or your husband.” o_O
Anyways let’s boil some peanuts!
Start with raw peanuts that are not dehydrated. Rinse these fellas well since they have lots of dirt on ’em. There’s nothing worse than feeling dirt or sand between your teeth!
Then all you have to do is boil the peanuts in salted water until it reaches a consistency you like. I like it to be soft, but not mushy–it should have some bite. Young peanuts taste better and cook faster, so I would just boil it for an hour, then check doneness by eating a peanut every 20-30 minutes until done.
There are other Asian and African variations on boiled peanuts that use spices, but I am completely happy with these. Maybe some other day! As if taste wasn’t enough for you, you can happily snack knowing boiled peanuts have 2-4 times more antioxidants than raw or roasted versions.
If you want to feel really Vietnamese, kick this up a notch by pairing these with some Heineken on ice.
Much like watermelon seeds, sunflower seeds, Pirate’s Booty or Cheetos (mmm, Cheetos)… this is a snack I could just eat nonstop. What kinda snacks are you addicted to?
- 2 pounds raw peanuts, not the dehydrated type
- 2 ounces of salt
- 2 gallons of water
- Soak peanuts in water for 15 minutes to loosen dirt, rinse and drain
- Add peanuts and salt to boiling water
- Keep a low-medium boil for 1 hour, checking for doneness every 20-30 minutes. It should have some bite and be soft, but not mushy. It can take 1-4 hours depending on age of the peanuts.