I HATE stale dry roasted peanuts! But just try and buy a small jar of them... no such thing anymore. Subsequently, I end up throwing half of them away because they don't get eaten before they go stale.
I didn't know this, but I bet the rest of the world did..
Nuke em! I was advised by someone to put them on a paper plate or towel and zap em for 30 seconds.. it works! Just as fresh as when the jar is first opened.
Placing them in the oven for a short period of time will do it.. re-roasting, so to speak.
You can zap many stale foods and make them taste better, especially bread. Microwaves break the hydrogen bonds that form in stale foods. Microwave energy does nothing to remove substances that form that result in bad tastes, though, such as molds.
HOWEVER...it is not a good idea to eat old peanuts even if you can make them taste good. Peanuts can have a mold on them that produces aflatoxin, which causes cancer. Its recommended that you not store peanuts too long (or corn or grain products unless you can store them in the freezer or another very dry place.)
Buy smaller amounts, eat them fresh, or store them in the freezer.
I always have slight second thoughts when I eat peanuts or peanut butter because of aflatoxins. That said, I don't know enough about them. I do try to buy freshly ground peanut butter at the co-op, but I don't know if the preservatives in pre-made peanut butter ward off the aflatoxins or what...
The fungus won't grow in peanut butter- it has to have been on the peanuts already. So if the peanuts are good, you are safe with old peanut butter. It WILL grow on peanuts but I did read that roasting is believed to make them safer.
So I guess the trick is to be able to ascertain whether or not the peanuts used to make the peanut butter were fresh or not.
Do you know if the aflatoxins are visible, or detectable in any way that you could practicably use in, say, a grocery store? (For example, when they have the peanuts there along with a grinder so you can grind your own peanut butter.)
I was going to mention buying the amount that you want from a Bulk Food store, But, with all this scary talk, I don't know how long the stuff has been in that bin. Wouldn't nuking it in the Micro wave kill any bad stuff anyways?
Obviously you'd want to avoid rotten peanuts, but otherwise, no, you can't tell. If the aflatoxins are already there, roasting doesn't destroy them, but it may keep the fungus from growing on the peanuts.
Supposedly Consumer Union did a study.
A few years ago, Consumers Union looked into the question of aflatoxins in peanut butter and found that the amounts detectable varied from brand to brand. The lowest amounts were found in the big supermarket brands such as Peter Pan, Jif and Skippy. The highest levels were found in peanut butter ground fresh in health food stores.
Donna, the "Nutritionists" they made me go to had peanuts at the top of their list of things NOT to consume, I just assumed they contributed to the C problem. Heart problems run in my family. My grandfather and father both died relatively young of massive heart attacks.. and my uncle has had a triple bypass.
Great Bobbie.. you have shot down one of the few little vices left to me! Thanks a BUNCH! I can't smoke, I don't drink much, my drug days are over.. I suppose you are going to tell me coffee is going to kill me too! Ugh!
I only eat Planters dry roasteds.. and rarely do I find any jars under 1lb. As salty as they are, I might eat 1/2 cup at a sitting, and I sometimes mix them in with popcorn, but chuck the jar after about two weeks.. 1/2 full.
I tried it today for pistacios, having seen your solution for peanuts, and it worked great. You know, they always leave them out in a bin at the store where the humidity can get to them, so 2-3 minutes in the microwave makes them nice and crunchy again.