Caroline Lord Fiction Writer

Boiled Peanuts

Joseph McDougall owns Forest Lake Produce

Joseph McDougall owns Forest Lake Produce in Columbia, SC. He makes boiled peanuts on site for his customers who love them.

A few fun facts about peanuts.

— They aren’t nuts. They’re legumes.

— Peanuts are originally from South America, but scientists are pretty sure the plants took the long way ‘round, coming to the South from Africa. The Portuguese took the peanut plant to Africa around 1500 where peanuts became a culinary staple.

— Americans didn’t call them “peanuts” until the late 19th century. Before then, they were called ground nuts, ground peas, and goobers, a term derived from the Angolan word nguba.

—Boiled peanuts are freshly harvested or “green” nuts that are boiled in their shells in salty water for hours.

— By the 1920s, boiled peanuts were so popular that they started getting noticed by the “bemused Yankees.”

— In 2006, the South Carolina state legislature declared them South Carolina’s official snack food.

— They’re good and juicy!