Friday, April 1, 2011
Homemade Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
I have another confession to make, and this one is actually juicy:
I killed the Easter Bunny.
At least I did for my eight-year-old niece, who loved the holiday so much she had adorable habit of wearing fluffy rabbit ear headbands everywhere starting March 1st. A few days after Easter last year, I mentioned shopping for a shirt she got in her Easter basket to my mother, not noticing my niece playing on the floor. Being the little genius that she is, she realized that there was no such thing as the Easter Bunny and was very upset. I mady my munchkin cry. I'm the worst auntie ever!
Since then I make sure not to bring up Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy within a 100-mile radius of any child for fear of breaking more little hearts, and I send my munchkin little presents for the smaller holidays. Not because she needs it, simply because I feel guilty for killing the Easter Bunny! And it's really fun.
For Valentine’s Day, I sent her a package of homemade Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups. In a red box covered in glitter stickers. What eight-year-old wouldn’t want that?
These aren’t the store-bought chocolate peanut butter cups. They’re so much better. It’s a mouthful of smooth chocolate-peanut-buttery goodness and few things can top that. You can also use any type of chocolate you like, including bittersweet or even dark.
Growing up is hard, but luckily there is homemade candy to make it that much easier on the parents, aunties and the kids.
Think making them is hard? These candies can be made in a few easy steps:
Create the chocolate shell for the bottom and sides.
Pipe in peanut butter filling.
Spoon on chocolate to cover and freeze to set.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Adapted recipe by Martha Stewart
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 1/2 cups smooth peanut butter preferably all natural
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pound semisweet or milk chocolate
36 1 3/8-inch paper candy cups
Combine sugar, peanut butter, and butter in an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium-low speed until combined. Transfer mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tip, and set aside.
Melt chocolate in a double boiler over simmering water. Keep melted chocolate over hot water near work area. Use the back of a small measuring spoon to coat insides of the paper candy cups with the melted chocolate, making sure to cover the bottom and sides in a thin layer of chocolate. NOTE: I used the round back of a ¼ teaspoon to spoon in the chocolate and spread it evenly around the cups.
Transfer cups to a rimmed baking sheet or muffin tins (which will keep the cups from sliding around). Transfer to freezer until set, about 10 minutes.
Remove cold chocolate cups from the freezer. Pipe peanut butter filling into each cup until three-quarters full. Spoon melted chocolate into each cup to cover. Return to the freezer until set, 15 to 25 minutes. The candies may be served right away, or kept tightly sealed in the fridge or freezer. Eat cold or at room temperature.