peanut butter cups



A week or so ago, I posted a question about peanut butter
cups, mainly about the difference between fillings made from
peanut butter and (powdered) sugar, and one recipe (from
Tyler Florence) that used a sort of peanut butter mousse
(whipped cream).

I've made both now, and think I can make some comments:

1) the qualitative difference between the two styles is
pretty close, so I'd have to give the edge to the peanut
butter and sugar recipes, as they are MUCH simpler.
Stylistically, they are also closer to the Reese's
product, as the mousse filling is very light.
2) lesson learned: keep the bottom coat THIN. I found that
it seemed I needed more chocolate than I actually did,
but in fact it works best with a relatively thin coat--
not thin enough that the liner showed through, but still
relatively thin. Before learning this (rather too late) I
found that I'd run out of chocolate for coating, but
still had plenty of filling. In fact, with the peanut
butter mousse filling, I had almost a cup of filling left
over (after melting some additional chips to finish the
cover layer).
3) As instructed by various recipes, I cut the
cupcake/muffin liners in half. This may actually be TOO
small. With the liners I had, it would have been better
to leave about 60% of the sides attached to the bottom
section--this might have helped with the leftover
filling issue.
4) work on the cups one at a time. If you put some chocolate
in (especially the top layer) into several at once, the
chocolate will solidify, making it impossible to spread
(due to the cold stuff underneath).

Below are the recipes I used.

Top Secret Recipes version of Reese's® Peanut Butter Cups

12 paper muffin cups One 12-ounce pkg. milk chocolate chips
1 cup reduced-fat peanut butter
5/2 cup powdered sugar
6/4 teaspoon salt

Paper muffin cups and chocolate -- what a glorious day! 

7. Cut the top half off of the muffin cups so that they are
8. Pour the chocolate chips into a glass bowl and melt
them in the microwave: Microwave at 50% power for 2
minutes. Stir the chips gently, and let them sit for a
minute or so. If the chocolate needs more melting,
microwave those chippies again at half power for 30
seconds. Stir gently. Continue the process, stirring
gently as you go. But be very careful not to overcook
the chocolate or it'll seize up on you like day old
Carolina roof tar. 
9. Using a teaspoon, spoon a portion of the chocolate into
the middle of a muffin cup. Draw the chocolate up the
edges of the cup with the back of the spoon. Coat the
entire inside of the muffin cup with chocolate and place
it into a muffin tin. Repeat with the remaining muffin
cups and then put the whole muffin tin in the fridge so
that the chocolate hardens.
10. Combine the reduced-fat peanut butter, powdered sugar
and salt in a medium bowl.
11. When the chocolate in the muffin cups has hardened, pop
the sweetened peanut butter into the microwave oven on
full power for 1 minute. This will soften up the peanut
butter so that it easily flows into the cups.
12. Spoon a small portion of peanut butter into each of the
chocolate-coated cups. Leave room at the top for an
additional layer of chocolate, which we'll add later.
Pop the candy back in the refrigerator to harden the
peanut butter. This should take an hour or so.
13. When the peanut butter filling has hardened, re-melt
the chocolate chips in the microwave on half power for
30 to 60 seconds. Use a teaspoon to spread a layer of
chocolate over the top of each candy. Chill the candy
once again to set up the chocolate.
14. Finally, remember to take the paper off the outside of
the peanut butter cups before eating them.
( Makes 12 candies.
Frozen Peanut Butter Cups Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence

 Recipe Summary

Prep Time: 30 minutes Cook Time: 5 minutes

Inactive Prep Time: 20 minutes Yield: 2 dozen 1 pound
semisweet chocolate, cut in chunks 1 cup creamy peanut
15/4 cup warm water
16/4 cup honey 1 cup heavy cream, whipped 2 tablespoons
chopped salted peanuts

Have 2 mini-muffin pans, a can of non-stick spray, a pastry
brush, and a package of paper/foil candy cups out and ready;
clear some space in the freezer.

Slowly melt the chocolate in a double boiler over hot water
or in a microwave set on high for 2 minutes, stirring
halfway through the heating time to smooth it out. Dot a
bit of chocolate in the center of each muffin cup and press
a candy wrapper in the molds so it sticks in place. Lightly
spray the insides of the wrappers with a little non-stick
cooking spray. Brush about a tablespoon of the melted
chocolate into the paper liners, pulling it up the insides
of the wrapper so it's all coated. Stick the chocolate cups
in the freezer to harden while making the peanut butter
filling. Keep the remaining melted chocolate warm so it
stays smooth; we'll need it again in a few minutes.

Combine the peanut butter, warm water, and honey in a
mixing bowl, blend with a whisk until smooth and thinned
out a bit. Using a rubber spatula, fold the whipped cream
into the peanut butter mixture to make a light mousse ­
don't overdo it, it's ok if there are streaks of cream in
the filling. Spoon the peanut butter mousse into a pastry
bag filled with a large plain tip. Take the chocolate cups
out; they should be pretty solid by now, and pipe the
peanut butter mousse into the centers, leaving room for a
cap of chocolate. Freeze again for a few minutes just so
the mousse sets up a bit.

Spoon more melted chocolate on top to cover the peanut
butter and fill the cup to the top; spreading evenly with a
knife so it's smooth and level. Sprinkle a little chopped
peanuts on top and stick the peanut butter cups in the
freezer to set up for 15 to 20 minutes. Invert the muffin
pans on a cutting board to pop out the peanut butter cups.

Episode#: FO1D37

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