Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Mini Peanut Butter Cups

This past Sunday I hosted a wonderful bridal shower for my future sister-in-law, Alexis. I have never been asked by so many people for one particular recipe! But, it seems that everyone there fell for my homemade miniature peanut butter cups. These bite-sized-melt-in-your-mouth sensations require no baking, can be prepared weeks in advanced and stored in the fridge), and apparently people go crazy over them... I found the original recipe in one of Nigella's cookbooks, she calls them 'Peanut Butter Squares', but over time, I changed a few things and made them my own. They work so well as bite-sized treats because they are so rich and creamy, but that's not to say that just one will ever be enough.
Miniature Peanut Butter Cups
makes about 40 pieces

For the base:
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/3 cups confectioner's sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup peanut butter (any kind you like)

For the topping:
3 ounces of good chocolate, dark or milk, your choice
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature

Grease a nine inch square pan. Using an electric mixer, mix together all the base ingredients until combined and sandy. Press this mixture into the base of the square dish in an even layer. You might find that wetting your hands will make it easier to spread the mixture evenly. Combine the 2 chocolates and the butter, and melt together. You can melt them by placing them in the microwave for a minute or two and stirring, or by placing them in a glass bowl all together over a pot of simmering water, and stirring until all ingredients are melted together. Spread the chocolate mixture over the peanut butter mixture evenly. Place in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight. At this point you will be faced with a few choices: You may cut them into small squares or use any kind of cookie cutter to cut them into fun shapes. I like to use a small round cookie cutter (about the size of a quarter). It helps to let the square pan sit out for about half an hour before using the cutters, so it soften just a bit. Once I am done cutting them all out, I take whatever edges are left in the pan and smush it all together, and form another layer. I allow the layer to sit in the fridge until it hardens, and then I use the cutters once again to cut out more...I repeat this process until there's nothing left, I just hate to see any of this gorgeous peanut butter perfection go to waste.


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