Peanuts are more than just being a salty bar snack. Indian kitchens have a special jar for these tiny and humble nuts. From being enjoyed as a healthy snack to being used as a ‘falhari food’ on fasting days, these nuts have multiple uses. Apart from these, peanuts are also used in tempering and seasoning. And how can we forget chikki and chutney? Peanuts have an important place in almost every cuisine of the country and are also used as oil and flour. 

Despite being known as peanuts, they are not related to tree nuts. Rather, they are legumes and are related to beans, lentils and soy. And just like other legumes they are also loaded with protein, healthy fats and various other nutrients. They are also low in carbs that makes it a great choice for diabetic people. Peanuts are very filling and also rich in several vitamins and minerals that help in weight loss. The antioxidants present in peanuts also help in improving heart health. 

If you are bored of the regular peanut dishes, here are some interesting ways to include peanuts in your meals: 

1. Peanut Brittle 


Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup white sugar 
  • ½ cup light corn syrup 
  • ¼ cup water 
  • ¼ tsp salt 
  • 1 cup peanuts 
  • 2 tsp unsalted butter (softened) 
  • 1 tsp baking soda

Method:  

  • Grease a large rimmed baking sheet and set it aside. 
  • Combine sugar, corn syrup, water, and salt in a heavy saucepan over medium heat.  
  • Stir until sugar is dissolved and the mixture comes to a boil, about five minutes. 
  • Stir in peanuts and cook until done, stirring occasionally.  
  • Remove from the heat and quickly stir in butter and baking soda, then immediately pour mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. 
  • Quickly use two forks to lift and pull the mixture into a 12x14-inch rectangle.  
  • Let cool until completely firm, at least for half an hour. 
  • And break peanut brittle into pieces. 

2. Peanut Kebab 

Ingredients:

  • 2 beetroots 
  • 1 cup chickpeas  
  • ¼ cup peanuts 
  • 1 tsp cumin powder 
  • 1 tsp coriander powder 
  • ½ tsp chilli powder 
  • ½ tsp garam masala powder  
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder  
  • ½ tsp dry mango powder  
  • A pinch of asafoetida 
  • 3 tbsp gram flour 
  • 1 tbsp corn flour 
  • 4 tbsp rava  
  • Salt as required 
  • Oil as required

Method: 

  • Wash the chickpeas and soak overnight then add it to cooker and pressure cook for two whistles and keep aside. 
  • Peel the skin and chop beetroots roughly into small pieces then boil them in water until cooked soft. 
  • Once done, drain the water and allow it to cool.  
  • Add it to mixer along with cooked chickpeas, add all the powders, asafoetida and required salt. 
  • Grind everything into thick smooth paste without adding water.  
  • Sprinkle very little water if necessary and transfer into mixing bowl and add gram flour to it. 
  • Coarsely crush peanuts and add it to the grounded mixture. 
  • Mix everything together and divide it into small balls and slightly flatten the balls in the shape of cutlets. 
  • Mix corn flour into thin paste, adding water and dip the prepared cutlets into corn flour mixture and roll into rava.  
  • Heat a griddle, adding a little oil and place the cutlets and fry until it turns golden and crisp on both sides.  
  • Repeat for remaining cutlets. You can also deep fry. 
  • And serve hot with ketchup.

3. Peanut Barfi 


Ingredients: 

  • 2 cup peanuts 
  • ½ cup cashew 
  • 2 cup jaggery 
  • ½ cup water 
  • ¼ cup milk 
  • 2 tbsp ghee 
  • ¼ tsp cardamom powder

Method: 

  • In a heavy-bottomed pan roast two cup peanuts on low flame. 
  • Roast until the peanuts turn crunchy and skin separates, cool completely and remove their skin. 
  • Transfer the roasted peanuts to the mixer jar along with half cup cashew and grind to a powder. 
  • In a large skillet, take jaggery and water. 
  • Boil until the syrup reaches one string consistency. 
  • Then add in prepared peanut cashew powder and mix well. 
  • Now add milk, ghee and cook on low flame.  
  • Cook until the mixture starts to leave the pan. 
  • Then add cardamom powder and mix well. 
  • Transfer the mixture into the tray lined with baking paper. 
  • Rest for four hours and unmold. 
  • Chop into the desired shape and garnish with dry fruits. 

4. Peanut Chicken  

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp cooking oil 
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced) 
  • 1 onion (sliced) 
  • 450 gm chicken breast (cut into small pieces) 
  • 3 tsp peanut butter powder 
  • 1 tsp water 
  • 2 tsp brown sugar 
  • 2 tsp soy sauce 
  • 1 tsp garlic chili sauce

Method: 

  • Heat oil in a skillet and add the garlic to the skillet and cook until it becomes fragrant.  
  • Remove the garlic and set aside.  
  • Add the onions and chicken to the skillet, turning the chicken every 2 to 3 minutes. 
  • Then combine the peanut butter powder, water, brown sugar, soy sauce, and garlic chili sauce.  
  • When the chicken is done, drizzle the sauce over chicken and cook for about one minute. 
  • Remove from heat and serve. 

5. Hummus 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup raw peanuts (boiled) 
  • 2 tsp raw mango (grated) 
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds  
  • 2 tsp lemon juice 
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced) 
  • 1/4 tsp cumin powder  
  • A pinch Kashmiri red chilli powder 
  • 2 tsp olive oil 
  • 2 tsp sesame oil 
  • 4 tsp water 
  • Salt as required

Method: 

  • Add all the ingredients to your food processor except water. 
  •  Pulse a couple of times to break down all the ingredients.  
  • Add water little by little and process until the hummus is coarse or smooth and creamy based on your preference. 
  • Transfer it to a serving bowl and sprinkle some chili powder or herbs and serve.