In South Carolina, they eat a thing called “boiled peanuts.” It is what it says on the package, but it is important to note the pronunciation. They’re not “boiled peanuts,” they’re “bald peanuts,” because some people in the South pronounce words in funny ways. So if you go to South Carolina and someone offers you a package of damp legumes which they call “bald,” they’re OK to eat even if they taste weird.
Anyway the point is that bald peanuts are about to have a banner year. From The New York Times:
In Georgia, where nearly half of the nation’s peanuts are grown, the annual fall harvest has yielded a record amount of big, shell-filling kernels that farmers say taste better than average.
The amount of farmland in Georgia planted with peanuts this year jumped to 730,000 acres, compared with 475,000 last year.
For peanut butter eaters, who saw a cost increase of 24 percent this year, the strong crop means prices should start falling as the year ends.
I like that the Times segments out a category of Americans as “peanut butter eaters.” First they came for the peanut butter eaters, and I did not speak out, because I have an allergy.
Although the harvest is just winding down, the national peanut crop report from October showed that more than 6.1 billion pounds will be harvested this year, compared with about 3.6 billion last year. The yields are especially good in Alabama, Florida, Mississippi and Georgia, where the main crop is a variety called runner peanuts.
Unlike Virginia-style peanuts that wind up being sold at ballparks or poured into bowls at cocktail parties, runner peanuts are the workhorses of the peanut world. They have a compact shape and a fine texture, which makes them ideal for peanut butter, oil and fillings for candy bars and other processed foods.
I am going to repeat this line because it makes me laugh.
Unlike Virginia-style peanuts that wind up being sold at ballparks or poured into bowls at cocktail parties …
“Hey, Anita, want to come to my classy cocktail party?” “Sure thing, Dell! But will you be serving peanuts in a bowl?” “Of course, Anita! It is a classy cocktail party!” No one has cocktail parties anymore, elitist New York Times. Get with the program.
In case you are looking for something to do with all of those cheap peanuts you’re buying and you are not a peanut butter eater, here is a recipe for bald peanuts. Do not make these; they are gross.
- In the South, a Good Year for Farmers of Peanuts , New York Times