When I was kid, every year just before Labor Day my dad and I were among the first people to visit The Franklin Cider Mill  when it opened for the season. We would gorge ourselves on fresh apple cider (you could even watch the wheel crush the apples!) and hot greasy doughnuts, fresh from the fryer. And there was always a caramel apple that would find its way to our house too.
You’re probably wondering why I’m telling you about a cider mill in a post about peanuts, aren’t you? Well, it’s the smell. The smell of the sugar and spices coating the peanuts while heating in the oven smelled exactly like the cider mill. And for a few hours, my apartment here in Los Angeles smelled like my childhood in Michigan. Trippy. And delicious.
And so are these peanuts. Of course, the original recipe called for pecans, but I’m not a fan so I subbed in peanuts. I’m pretty sure you could use most kinds of nuts. Anyway, these are the kinds of nuts that would go well in a salad, but trust me, they’re just as yummy going straight from your hand to your mouth!
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
2 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons apple pie spice
1 pound peanuts
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Pour butter into a 15 1/2×10 1/2×1-inch jelly roll pan. (I used a Silpat on top of parchment on the pan because my cookie sheet has seen better days.)
- In large bowl, beat egg whites and salt until foamy. Gradually add sugar and apple pie spice, beating just until blended. Add peanuts and stir to coat.
- Spread peanuts in a single layer in prepared pan. Bake about 30 minutes or until peanuts are crisp and butter is absorbed, turning peanuts over with a metal spatula every 10 minutes. Cool peanuts on baking sheet until crisp, about 2 hours. Store tightly covered.
Makes about 4 cups.
Recipe adapted from Domino Sugar .