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Prizewinning Peanut Brittle



Prizewinning Peanut Brittle
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grade 5
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.46

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    doily, peanutty, spanish, heated, operate, swelling, brittle, blister, county, extract, enjoy, molasses, supervise, rather, ingredient, best-looking
     content words:    Would Keisha


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Prizewinning Peanut Brittle
By Brenda B. Covert
  

1     Keisha didn't enjoy school. Sometimes she thought she would rather fall down a flight of stairs than go to classes! No matter how much she studied, her grades never improved. Some of the students were rude. Keisha didn't know whether she would graduate or not. Many times she felt like giving up.
 
2     Keisha felt more comfortable in her home's kitchen. She liked the colorful measuring cups and spoons. She liked to sort the shiny cooking utensils. She liked the mixing bowls and the appliances. She loved the aroma of home baked goodies! Could she be a cook someday?
 
3     One weekend Keisha convinced her mother to show her how to make peanut brittle. Her mother made the candy every winter. She liked to give it as gifts. Keisha wanted to make the candy, too! It was her favorite!
 
4     The recipe called for using the microwave. That made it seem easy. Keisha had popped popcorn in the microwave for a few years, so she felt that she could follow the recipe. Part of her wanted her mother to leave her alone, but another part wanted her mother to stay close by in case something went wrong. Her mother stayed in the kitchen to supervise Keisha's work.
 
5     The ingredients were lined up on the counter. Spanish peanuts, sugar, corn syrup, and molasses went into a glass bowl as Keisha measured out the proper amounts. She stirred and placed the bowl in the microwave. The recipe said to cook on high for four minutes, stir, and then cook for four more minutes. That was easy! After the eight minutes were up, Keisha added a teaspoon of vanilla extract from a dark brown bottle. She added a tablespoon of butter cut from a stick of butter. She heated that for one minute. Then she had to add three-fourths of a teaspoon of baking soda.
 
6     "Do it quickly!" her mother urged. "Then stir it all through."
 
7     "Oh!" Keisha cried as she began to stir in the baking soda. "The mixture changed color! It's lighter, and it's swelling up!"
 
8     "Don't get any on your fingers," her mother cautioned. "It will burn and leave a blister."
 
9     Keisha's mother put a big sheet of aluminum foil on the counter. Would Keisha pour out the mixture onto the foil?

Paragraphs 10 to 17:
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