I guess you could say that when it comes to baking, I don’t like to take the easy route. Boxed brownies? No way. Cinnamon rolls from a can? I don’t think so. Cut-from-a-log cookies? Are you crazy?! It’s not that I don’t think they are good…I know they are good! I would just rather make them myself, from scratch. Even if in the process I dirty 3 bowls, 6 spoons, a knife, the electric mixer beaters, 2 sets of measuring cups, a cutting board, and I don’t have a dishwasher. It’s all part of the fun.
So when I got a craving for rice krispie bars, I knew I couldn’t just make plain ‘ol rice krispie bars with the recipe from the back of the box. Thankfully I didn’t have to get too creative because David Lebovitz had already created a pimped-out rice krispie bar that looked too good not to make. Not only does this recipe make an awesome rice krispie bar, the candied peanuts in them are. so. GOOD! They are completely addicting and next time I will make a double batch of the peanuts so I have more leftover.
A (long) note about the peanuts…I went on a serious emotional roller coaster while making them. This seems dramatic, I know, but let me explain.
Emotion 1: excitement. Yay I’m going to make candied peanuts!
Emotion 2: annoyance. After what seemed like 20 minutes of stirring (which was probably only 10), I started to get really annoyed that the water and sugar were still so watery.
Emotion 3: disappointment. How could my arm be so tired?? When did I get so weak?!
Emotion 4: happiness. My watery sugar/peanut mixture was finally starting to crystallize!
Emotion 5: disbelief. I thought this whole stirring thing was over. 20 minutes of stirring and still no candied peanuts.
Emotion 6: Desperation/determination. I had already put a good 25 minutes into these dang peanuts, and they were going to turn out if it killed me! So I kept stirring and stirring until my arm felt like it wasn’t even part of my body anymore.
Emotion 7: pure joy. Like magic…the peanuts turned golden brown and before my eyes were candied peanuts. My emotional roller coaster ride had come to an end. My point in telling all of this? Don’t give up on the peanuts! They will test your patience, arm strength, and your trust in me, but believe me….they will be worth it!
White Chocolate Rice Krispie Bars with Candied Peanuts
from David Lebovitz
3 tbsp salted butter
4 oz white chocolate, finely chopped
1 cup candied peanuts (recipe below)
10 oz bag mini marshmallows
6 cups Rice Krispies
Lightly grease 9×13″ baking dish.
In medium saucepan, melt butter. Once melted, add chopped white chocolate. Stir until melted.
Add marshmallows and stir constantly until completely melted. Remove from heat and add Rice Krispies and candied peanuts. Mix until well combined.
Scrape into prepared pan and let cool.
makes 2 cups of peanuts
2 cups peanuts, unsalted
1 cup white sugar
1/3 cup water
1/2 tsp sea salt
In a large skillet, combine peanuts, sugar, and water. Cook the ingredients over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until the liquid seizes up. It will take a few(read: at least 10) minutes.
At this point, the sugar will crystallize and the peanuts will get crusty. Then, after a few more minutes, the mixture will become sandy. Don’t worry! It’s okay! Just lower the heat, and keep stirring. Scrape any syrup that collects and try to coat the peanuts as much as possible with it.
If the mixture starts to smoke, remove from heat and keep stirring. A trick from David: remove the pan from heat occasionally and tilt the pan around to regulate the heat and syrup. They will be done when they are a golden brown color. Right before they are done, sprinkle them with a bit of sea salt. Spread peanuts onto a prepared baking sheet to cool. Store in an airtight container for up to one week.
For David’s step by step tutorial, click here