I've never made toffee or peanut brittle before, but Stephen convinced me we should try, as brittle is one of his favourites and he hasn't made any for years - so at 1030 the other night, this is what we were doing.
Put 3 cups of caster sugar and 1 cup of water in a heavy-based pan and heat, while stirring, until sugar dissolves.
Once dissolved, boil for around 10 minutes until it goes golden.
That's what it tells you to do in the recipes - but ours was taking ages and we were waiting at least 30 minutes before we decided maybe we should turn up the heat and boil it more rapidly.
Once it was boiling more rapidly it pretty quickly went golden, and when a drop of the hot sugar was put into a glass of cold water, there was a distinctive 'crack' sound which meant it was ready.
We used a large baking tray lined with buttered baking paper, and spread roasted peanuts over. (Protect the table/work surface underneath the pan, as the whole thing gets very hot.)
The peanuts could have been spread more evenly, but the non-peanut edges were good for the children who don't like peanuts.
And we found for those who do like peanuts, the middle part of the brittle (with lots of peanuts in) was the best part - so maybe next time more peanuts would be better.
3 cups caster sugar
1 cup water
200 g (or more) roasted peanuts (unsalted)
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