Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Big on Brittle.

Posted By on Tue, Jan 26, 2010 at 8:16 AM

click to enlarge unknown.jpg

According to Foodimentary Guy, today is National Peanut Brittle Day. The notice turns my thoughts to the sweet nut-dotted confection and its many variations. Arkansas Peanut Brittle is actually one of those rare dishes that can truly be considered a state food.

The town of Arkadelphia itself is blessed with two of the best brittle makers known to man. As far as the average consumer knows, Arkadelphia is about the only place that can send you some of that great brittle directly to your home. But there are a few other places you might give a try. More brittle banter after the bounce.

click to enlarge unknown.jpg

You have to talk about the big operations first, right? Andrew’s Candy Kitchen in Arkadelphia has this massive, massive operation. They’ll go through more than 100,000 pounds of peanuts each year -- and that’s not mentioning the cashews, pecans or sunflowers that go into their different brittles. The big tubs and little packs also come in a sugar-free option. For a 1 ½ pound tub, you’re looking at a setback of $20-24. They also offer three pound tubs for $29-35. Check out their website or call them at (870) 246-2796.

click to enlarge unknown.jpg

A thinner variation is the other Arkadelphia stalwart, Juanita’s Candy Kitchen. The thin butter-free brittle is almost crystalline -- the pecan version comes out almost clear. I dig on the cashew brittle most. They go through 350 pounds of sugar a day to knock out those big tubs. Those range from $11 for a 1 ½ pound tub of peanut brittle and $12.75 for the same in pecan or cashew to $23 for the three pound variety tub. They have a website, too, or you can call (870) 246-8542.  Diane’s Gourmet Luxuries over in the Market Street Shopping Center carries both companies' products. 

click to enlarge unknown.jpg

Look further afield, and you might stumble upon some monk-created goodness. Subiaco Abbey does its own Abbey Brittle, made by the monks and their helpers. It’s more of a traditional peanut brittle, and comes just in 32 ounce cans for $25. Right now their website says it’s sold out, but I’m sure that’s probably just from the Christmas rush. Worth a check-back. It’s thicker than Andrew’s or Juanita’s, and not quite as hard.

click to enlarge unknown.jpg

Then there’s brittle that’s so much more like what I remember being given in-family for gifts when I was a kid. Martin Greer’s Candies up in Gateway still makes their peanut brittle with butter and cream. It’s softer, and it has a particularly vanilla essence to it. I wouldn’t be surprised if sometimes those folks might dip it in chocolate; the strongly chocolate scented shop west of Eureka Springs is the only place I know where you can pick up chocolate covered pralines. The recipes haven’t changed in a century. It runs $11.90 a pound and you can order it on the company website or by calling (479) 656-1440.

I haven’t tried out some of the other brittle operations in town -- like Hamburg’s Toffee Time or Karen’s Candy Kitchen out of Gurdon. Chances are, I’d like their brittle, too. After all, I am an Arkansas girl.

Now, if you're the sort of person who just has to make it yourself, check out Foodista's Arkansas Peanut Brittle recipe.  Oh, if I only had the time today.




Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Kat Robinson

  • Burger joint of the week: 4Square Gifts

    With notes of onion and garlic, a substantial bit of Cheddar on top, lettuce and tomato and chipotle aioli and caramelized onions on a grilled bun, 4 Square Gifts has a burger to remember. Of course, there's no meat involved.
    • Feb 23, 2012
  • Burger joint of the week: Top Rock Drive In

    The first thing to note about the Leopard Burger is that it isn't actually made of leopards.
    • Feb 16, 2012
  • Burger joint of the week: Chip's Barbecue

    Chip's Hickory Burger is smothered in barbecue sauce and topped with Cheddar cheese. But the patty beneath is smoky and flavorful.
    • Feb 9, 2012
  • More »

Most Shared

  • Womack gets plucked by 'Last Week Tonight with John Oliver'

    HBO's "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, which premiered last April, has consistently shown itself to be a Daily Show-level contender for the humor-news crown. Up for discussion on the show last night: the myriad ways major poultry producers exploit chicken farmers. Also featured in the video: Arkansas Republican Rep. Steve Womack, who gets plucked and roasted for placing a rider on the agriculture appropriations bill that forbids the USDA from enforcing already-written protections for the nation's poultry farmers.
  • Magazine obtains police report over Josh Duggar sexual molestation investigation; he admits past 'mistakes,' resigns Family Council job

    In Touch magazine reports that it has obtained a Springdale police report containing allegations of sexual misconduct against an unnamed teen that it says it has confirmed was Josh Duggar, a minor at the time and now a prominent lobbyist for the Family Research Council and a leading voice for legal discrimination against gay people.
  • State budget administrator Brandon Sharp fired; no reason given

    KATV reports that Brandon Sharp was fired Monday afternoon after four years as state budget administrator, a $101,000-a-year job in the Department of Finance and Administration.
  • KATV: Bill Walker's state agency approves grants to sister UPDATE

    KATV has dug up on questionable public dealings by a familiar figure — former state Sen. Bill Walker, who headed the state Career Education Department during the administration of Gov. Mike Beebe.
  • What's not to love about the Bentonville Film Festival? Walmart.

    The Bentonville Film Festival, launched this year by actress Geena Davis and held earlier this month from May 5-9, earned a number of largely positive notices from major outlets like the Huffington Post ("At the Bentonville Film Festival, Women Are Playing in the Major Leagues"), the L.A. Times ("Bentonville Film Festival pushes diversity message from year one") and the New York Times ("Bentonville, Ark., Hosts a Film Festival Without a Movie Theater"), most of them centering on its unique and vital agenda — promoting diversity and gender equality in filmmaking — and its celebrity cache (e.g. an acting workshop taught by Robert De Niro, a softball game led by Rosie O'Donnell, etc.).

Most Recent Comments



© 2015 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation