Monday, December 30, 2013

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

These were for Mike this Christmas, and here I digress to note that I should make at least one dessert at Christmas that I myself am excited about--sugar cookies, gingerbread, and peanut butter cups are fun to make, but they don't thrill me--because just five days after the holiday, I had nothing sweet to eat around here until tonight when Mike bought me a box of Swiss cake rolls.  And one, especially one who has a sweet tooth and enjoys baking, should have something homemade to her liking on-hand less than a week after Christmas, I say.  And that reminds me that about seven years ago when I worked in a bakery, a little old lady asked me a question about the pies, so I walked with her over to the display case to show her what we had.  She mentioned lemon meringue, and I told her that we had one but that it was sugar-free.  "Oh no," she said.  "I've got to have sugar.  I love my sweets."  And then she poked me in the belly and added, "I guesss you do too!"  She was so pleasant and good-intentioned, I couldn't help but laugh--although:  WOW!--and I've remembered that belly-poke every time I've referred to my sweet tooth since then.  Ahhh, people!  Ya gotta love 'em. 

These peanut butter cups turned out quite cute, if I may say so.  These are the cupcake liners Aunt Laurie sent in our Christmas tin this year, and I love them so much.  She had filled the tin with kitchen-related things in this (my favorite) shade of green, and after I trimmed a little off the tops of these papers, they were the perfect depth for peanut butter cups.  If I were giving these as a gift, I'd double the liners/papers so the chocolate and no-stick spray wouldn't shine through and discolor them the way they did in places here, but this is the first time I'd used wrappers/made them as cups instead of just shaping them into chocolate-covered peanut butter items (Easter eggs, Valentine hearts, etc.), so live and learn.  

The first time I made these, I used a slightly different recipe and shaped them into footballs for a Super Bowl party, piping lacing onto their tops.  
It was more fun this time with the cupcake wrappers since it's the papers' folds that give them the brand-name peanut butter cup look.  The recipe I used for these is based on this "Top Secret" one.  I made a few changes based on the comments and past experience:  I used the all-natural (oil-on-the-top) reduced-fat peanut butter, I added an extra pinch of salt, I used close to a cup of powdered sugar, I sprayed the cupcake liners, and I only waited maybe ten minutes after the chocolate base/side layer had cooled before adding the flattened-out ball of the peanut butter mixture to it (and maybe another ten after spooning the chocolate top layer over the peanut butter ball/middle).  These set up really fast.  It was cold the night I made this batch, so I just let the cups chill beside an open window instead of bothering with the fridge or freezer.  This will probably be another Christmas tradition for us now, so it's nice that it's an easy and inexpensive (only four ingredients) recipe. 
Mike's the peanut butter-lover in this household, and he thinks these are just like the brand name peanut butter cups--"or better"--so there you go.  I promise not to poke your belly if you eat too many.  ;)  


Marie said...

Great post Val! A feast for the heart as well as the eyes. I do love peanut butter cups, not something which we can find very often over here. Those football goodies are so adorable! Well done YOU! Happy New Year! xxoo

emily barlocker scott said...

Ugggghhhhh! Now I want peanut butter cups and it's 8am........

La Table De Nana said...

They look exactly like Reese's!
Yes people can be funny..:)
I think I am guilty of that..I once offered to drive someone somewhere on cold snowy day.. as I drove out of our area after picking her up..I saw darling little girls..sliding down high snowbanks onto the street w/ platic saucers..
I said Oh my.. those children shouldn't be sliding onto the street!

She said those are my girls..Oh lala..
THis is almost 40 yrs ago..

And poking should be prohibited..
I am not fond of that humor..even coming from good natured people:)

I was teased so much! Would never tease.
Happy New Year ..!
I like how everything thrills you..I've told you that..never change..

Nellie said...

Oh, Val! My mouth dropped open at the "poke in the belly!" These are absolutely delicious candy treats! Happy New Year to you and yours!

Val said...

Thank you all, and happy new year.

I know, the belly-poke...! My mouth surely dropped open at that at the time too, Nellie. :)

Monique, that's funny. We probably all have similar stories, but knowing we're all human doesn't make those cringe-worthy moments much better.

And Marie and Emily, you should try them! So easy.