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Homemade Pretzels

I haven't made homemade pretzels since we were in Alabama and I had forgotten how easy they are if not a little time consuming. I made these last week for Oscar night. They keep a long time in an airtight container. 1   (.25 ounce) package   active dry yeast 1 tablespoons   brown sugar 1  teaspoons   salt 1 ½   cups   warm water (110 degrees) 3   cups   all-purpose flour 1   cup   bread flour 2   cups   warm water (110 degrees) 2   tablespoons   baking soda 1-2   tablespoons   butter, melted 2   tablespoons  kosher salt Line two or three baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. Place the yeast, brown sugar and salt in the 1.5 cups of warm water. Stir to dissolve. Stir in the flour. Knead for about 7-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl and cover. Let it rise for an hour (I place mine in the oven with the light on). Combine the two cups of warm water with the baking soda in a square shallow pan. After the dough has risen, cut it into 12 equal pieces.  Roll each section into a

Foolproof Microwave Peanut Brittle

My mother isn't able to cook anymore but she used to bake all the time. Peanut brittle was one of her specialties and she made it often.  I have never made it the way she did, which involved lots of stirring, using a candy thermometer (although I don't think she used one, she just knew when it was ready by the way it looked), and more stirring. Here is a simple recipe for making peanut brittle in the microwave and it is easy as 1-2-3.

1 cup sugar
1 cup raw peanuts
1/2 cup white corn syrup
1/2 tsp. salt
1 TBS. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda

You will need a microwave-proof container that will hold 2 quarts. 

Stir together the peanuts, sugar, syrup and salt. Microwave on high for 8 minutes, stirring after 4 minutes.
Add the butter and vanilla and stir. Microwave for an additional 2 minutes. Add the baking soda and stir gently until the mixture is light and foamy.
Pour the mixture out onto a warm, buttered pan or a pan lined with aluminum foil. Let it cool before breaking it into pieces.

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. I'm making that tomorrow!

  2. I would have never thought peanut brittle could be so easy. Have always avoided making it because I thought it was difficult and the weather had to be just right. I'm trying this one!

  3. Thanks for tis Phillip! I made peanut brittle a couple of times the old fashoned way and decided that it was way too much work. Your method makes it look lots simpler. Off to the kitchen to give it a try!

  4. Mmmmm one of my favorite things in the world. I will have to try this. I never have made it because it is so time consuming, margins for error etc. I will definitely give it a try. Thanks for the recipe.

  5. Looks wonderful!

    Happy Holidays, Phillip!

  6. could be very dangerous that I know about this...I'm a Peanut Brittle Fiend!

  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  8. I'm a non-cooker for the most part but -


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