Why such a basic post?
This is how the peanuts turn out when roasted! No brown specks. Golden all over.
Indian cooking mostly involves stove, unless one grew up in villages that had a ‘sanjha chulha’ or common tandoor. Even that was restricted to certain Northern regions. My mum nor my aunts owned an oven. It is more a second generation thing. Most of my friends still prefer buying a microwave oven which ends up being used as a re-heater. My first oven was microwave too, but I put it to use one hundred percent – until I read about the dangers of electromagnetic radiation. It put an end to my comforts, but that was a good thing. I learnt to appreciate the taste that slow cooking imparts. One misses out on the joy of extracting tasty bits that get stuck to the vessel when cooking on stove top. The timer in a microwave takes care that no bits will ever stick.
I also made cakes in my microwave and I missed that when I switched to stove-top, so we soon pulled out an oven that was gifted by a friend for our wedding and put it to good use. While it made great bakes (cakes and cookies), it was certainly not energy efficient. I could not use it for roasting nuts as stove top was quicker.
It is only 3-4 years back, when I purchased my existing oven that I realized how inefficient the old one was. However, I have been roasting vegetables, nuts and using the oven for mundane things with extreme relief ever since realization.
Roasting nuts in a wok on stove-top has a few drawback
- the act needs to be constantly monitored,
- nuts need to be stirred around because heat is not evenly distributed in a wok; and,
- despite everything, you know the total surface area of the nuts will not uniformly roasted. There will be specks of uneven brown.
In case you haven’t done it yet, take a closer look at the roasted peanuts in the photograph above and tell me – aren’t they pretty perfect?
This post is for all those mails that ask me what else I use my oven for, apart from the obvious. I reply that it serves for roasting nuts and making a healthy evening snack. Today the standard reply becomes a post.
Technique: How to roast peanuts (or any other nuts) in an oven or (OTG)
Shelled, raw, dry peanuts – 1/2 cup
Pre-heat oven without roasting tray at 150 deg. C for 10 minutes.
Place peanuts in the oven tray in the center of the oven and adjust the timer for 8 minutes. Check after 5 minutes. Remove tray and shake the nuts around a bit. I jiggle the tray and put it back. Check after 3 minutes. Mine takes 8 minutes.
Depending on the internal temperature of your oven the time may vary by a couple of minutes.
The cue is when the skin darkens a few shades and starts to split. It should change from pink to reddish, not black. A minute makes a lot of difference.
What you get is golden, roasted peanuts, not spotted ones. You can roast all your nuts this way. I roast cashews, almonds, walnuts and hazelnuts in my oven. I even roast lentils, which take a shorter time. I love that I don’t have to stand stirring them all the time, and feel the heat down my neck.
Time varies with the kind of nuts being roasted. This does not qualify as a recipe, but then, do you not like to snack on healthy snacks? Roasted peanuts fit in nicely, don’t they?