After 10,000 miles through 20 states in 8 months, my strongest memories center on food. Each region had its own staples, seasonings and flavor palette. And in each region, I discovered a treat I had never before tried.
In Georgia it was boiled peanuts.
I can hear my friends with Southern roots howling in disbelief. “You’ve never had boiled peanuts?”
Well, I have now. And they are as different from the roasted version as they can be. They are boiled IN THE SHELL in salted or seasoned water. You can buy them in grocery stores from the same type of tureen in which northern stores sell soup.
The shells have softened and are easily peeled open. The nuts inside have also softened, and have the feel of a cooked navy bean. They maintain much of the peanutty taste, but without the roasting, it is much milder.
To my Georgia friends, Len and Susanne, who insisted I try this local favorite, I say “Thanks!” Best of all, it is a treat that is easily transported and easily shared.