Twice a month we highlight local restaurants, farms and farmers markets featured on episodes of UNC-TV’s “Flavor, NC.” This week, we review the third episode of Season 3, in which host Lisa Prince highlights peanuts from Bakers’ Southern Tradition Peanuts in Bertie County and peanut recipes from Herons Restaurant at the Umstead Hotel and Spa in Cary.
In 2012, North Carolina’s 5,000 peanut farmers produced 292 million pounds of peanuts, ranking fourth in the nation in peanut production. In this episode of Flavor, NC, Lisa visits Bakers’ Peanuts in Bertie County, calling it “practically peanut paradise.” The Baker family plants about 450 acres of peanuts each year. Their peanut products include blister-fried, chocolate-covered, Cajun-seasoned, peanut brittle and more. In the episode, Danielle Baker explains the difference between blanched, split and red-skinned peanuts and long-time employee Susan Lozaga teaches Lisa how peanut brittle is made.
Then Lisa heads to the Umstead Hotel and Spa in Cary where chefs Scott Crawford and Daniel Benjamin show her some creative recipes using peanuts, including boiled peanut hummus, fingerling potato salad and Whatchamacallit in a glass. Following is the recipe for boiled peanut hummus.
- 5 pounds raw peanuts in the shell
- 1 ¼ cups Kosher Salt
- 1 ½ gallons water
- ½ cup smoked paprika
- ¼ cup cayenne pepper
- 4 tablespoons cider vinegar
- ¼ cup peanut oil
In a large stock pot bring peanuts, water, paprika and cayenne pepper to a rolling boil. Reduce heat to a steady simmer and cook, stirring occasionally for 2 to 2 ½ hours.
Remove from heat and strain, reserve 1 cup of the liquid. Cool peanuts until they can be handled. Remove boiled peanuts from the shell (don’t eat too many while you’re peeling).
In a food processor, puree peanuts with cider vinegar and peanut oil adding a small amount of liquid at a time, until hummus is desired consistency and creaminess. Spread on flat bread, cracker or toasted baguette.
Watch the episode or visit Flavornc.com for the rest of the recipes.