Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

A couple of weeks ago, while grocery shopping, the temptation to buy a bag of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups almost overtook me. But I resisted, and told myself that if I wanted candy, I had to make it myself. And so I did, one day last week.

Several years ago, I cut out a recipe for peanut butter cups from a Taste of Home magazine. I've made them a few times, tweaking the recipe to suit my preferences. Here's my version:

1.25 cups creamy natural peanut butter, divided
1.5 Tbsp butter, softened
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 cups (12 oz) dark chocolate chips
1 cup (6 oz) milk chocolate chips

Combine 3/4 cup peanut butter, butter and powdered sugar in a small bowl until smooth. Set aside.
In a microwave safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips and 1/2 cup peanut butter. Stir after one minute, and every 30 seconds after, if needed. My microwave usually takes just 90 seconds to melt the chocolate chips.
Line mini muffin tins with papers. Drop enough melted chocolate into each paper liner to cover the bottom. (It's best to work with one tin at a time so the chocolate doesn't harden up before you've finished the entire process.)
Using about a teaspoon of the peanut butter mixture, form it into a patty.
Place a patty on top of the chocolate in each paper liner.
Cover with another spoonful of melted chocolate, making sure all of the peanut butter is hidden.
Put in refrigerator to firm up. Makes about 4 dozen candies, depending on how full you fill the paper liners. Store in the refrigerator to maintain freshness. Unless, of course, you eat them all in one day.

One of my nephews and one of my nieces are both allergic to peanuts, so one year at Christmas time, I made these using sunflower seed butter. They were delicious! I would almost say I prefer the sunbutter version best. I've varied the type of chocolate chips, too, but found that 100% milk chocolate makes for a very soft candy cup. It's best to use a higher percentage of semi-sweet along with the milk chocolate. The best, in my opinion, is Ghirardelli 64% dark chocolate for the entire amount of chocolate, especially with the sunbutter version. Oh so yummy!

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