Preheat oven to 350°. Bake peanuts in a single layer in a shallow pan 15 minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring halfway through. Bring milk, cream, brown sugar, honey, salt, lemon rind strips, and peanuts to a boil in a large heavy-duty saucepan over medium-high heat; reduce heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 45 minutes. Remove from heat, and stir in vanilla bean paste. Let stand 15 minutes. Discard lemon rind strips. Process mixture with a handheld blender until smooth. Strain into a pitcher. If desired, stir in 2 to 3 Tbsp. bourbon per 1 cup punch just before serving. Garnish, if desired.