I buy raw peanuts from the local market and boil my own. Being from SE Louisiana and liking boiled seafood, the seasoning used in the boil just begs to be used to boil peanuts.
This is how I do it. I'll half fill a large pot (20 qt.) with water, bring it to a boil, then add a very liberal amount of seafood boil seasoning. I'll use as much, or maybe just a bit more, than I'd use to boil crawfish, shrimp or crabs to the pot.
This stuff is very highly seasoned with salt and cayenne type peppers. When done right, a quick sip of the water will practically take your breath away when tasting it. I'll add the raw peanuts and over the course of the first half hour bringing the water back to a boil I"ll push the peanuts down since they tend to float for a while. Once the water replaces the air in the shell, they will settle in the pot somewhat, but continue to stir the pot as they cook every half hour or so to evenly cook them.
I'll cook them on a slow boil for about 4 hours before shutting off the fire and letting them soak for an hour or more. During the cooking time after the first couple hours you may want to take a few out to test to see if it meets your taste. Some recipes call for much longer cooking times but the longer you cook them, the softer the peanut gets. I find 4 hours cooking time and an hour or so of soaking time is what works for my taste. After they reach the desired texture, pour them into a collander and drain well.
My wife likes them a bit dryer than right out the pot so I'll take some of them and place them on a baking sheet and place them in the oven at 225 degrees for an hour or so to kind of roast them a bit.
They don't store well due to being damp and will mold in a few days if left out at room temperature. They last longer in the fridge, and they do freeze well for later use. Mine never last long enough to reach the freezer stage but a friend of mine takes his and puts them in quart Zip Lock freezer bags to store in his freezer.
Reason for this edit: When drying the peanuts in the oven for the wife, I'll leave the peanuts in the shell just like they came out the boil. Just wanted to clarify this.
Last edited by gumbo2176
on Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:49 am, edited 1 time in total.