What if I can't tell whether they are RAW or DRIED?

by Grandma
(Ridgeland, MS)

These are the big ones and they were neither "green" looking nor very soft. I know they are raw, but I'm only cooking 2 lb for myself, so how long do I boil the suckers? Also, I only had 1/2 cup of salt that I put in at the beginning of boiling. I've had to add water since, so will that reduce the salty taste? HELP!!

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Oct 14, 2012
Thought the results might be interesting!
by: Ridgeland Grandma

Just as a follow-up, I boiled those things for 4 1/2 hours, testing as I went. I must have done something wrong, tho'! They just don't taste right! :( Some of them were even "bitter"! What did I do wrong? So disappointed!

Oct 14, 2012
Are they Green Raw or Dried Peanuts?
by: Bret


There are several ways you can determine whether they are green raw, or dried peanuts. The bottom line is that "doneness" is decided by the final texture of the boiled peanuts, not the boiling time.

Generally green peanuts are advertised as such, or called "boiling peanuts". If they were refrigerated when you bought them, then they are green raw. They are typically sold in a mesh bag, not airtight. Green peanuts have a kernel moisture content of about 35% to 50% because they were recently dug from the ground. Their moisture content makes them prone to spoiling quickly if not stored in cold, dry conditions. Green peanuts have a shelf life of about 7 to 10 days when properly refrigerated.

If the peanuts came in an airtight, factory sealed plastic bag, labeled as raw, and sold at room temperature, then they are dried. Dried raw peanuts will usually have a "best by" date printed on them, which is typically 1 year from the date they were packaged. Dried peanuts also may be sold in a mesh bag. Dried raw peanuts have a kernel moisture content of 10%, having been carefully dried soon after they were dug from the ground. They have a longer shelf life because the low kernel moisture content prevents spoilage. Dried raw peanuts have a shelf life of at least 1 year when stored at room temperature.

Green peanuts must boil at least 1 hour, up to about 4 hours, depending on their maturity, moisture content, size, and how soft you like them.

Dried peanuts must boil longer than 4 hours, up to 24 hours, depending on their size, whether the shells are sealed or cracked, and how soft you like them.

Taste test a few peanuts as they boil. Start sampling them after about 1 hour of boiling. Continue to sample them every 30 minutes to 1 hour and notice their change in texture. Keep boiling them until they reach the degree of softness that you like. Some people like them al dente, a bit firm, others like them very soft, but not mushy.

They are done when you like their texture.

Regarding adding water as they boil, this is common. Only the water boils away, the salt stays in the pot, so don't worry about it diluting the salt.

Boiled peanuts will not taste very salty until they first soften. For maximum juicy flavor, let the peanuts soak in the cooling brine. Repeated cycles of simmering and soaking will allow the peanuts to suck up the salt water. Boiled peanuts will sink after they become saturated with the salt water.

Oct 14, 2012
Bitter Boiled Peanuts
by: Bret

Are you sure they were raw peanuts? How did you conclude they were raw?

Roasted peanuts can have a bitter taste, especially the large Virginia varieties. This has been the subject of studies to understand the relationship of sweet, bitter, and roasted peanut sensory attributes with carbohydrate components in peanuts.

I have noticed that peanuts become bitter when roasted too long.

Some people are sensitive to the bitter taste of iodized salt, and thus boil with sea salt, or non iodized salt.

I prefer to boil Valencia peanuts, and think they tend to have a sweeter taste than Virginia Jumbos.

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