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Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Hearts

22 Feb

ChocolatePBHearts-9

I know, this is a little late for Valentine’s Day, but it’s still a great gift for a loved one, and can be adapted to almost any shape. If you’re anything like me, and absolutely addicted to the wonderful combination of peanut butter and chocolate, then you’ll love this. It’s like reeses peanut butter cups, but even more awesome.

Start by creaming together peanut butter and softened cream cheese. You ARE making your own peanut butter, right? If not, go here immediately!

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Add chocolate wafer cookie crumbs and mix together, then add sugar and butter first on low, then increase the speed until everything is combined. Scrape the bowl down, and mix again.

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Press into molds, or shape into balls, whichever you prefer.

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Next, melt the chocolate. You can use a double boiler or a microwave. If you’re curious about tempering the chocolate, go here. Dip the hearts or balls or whatever into the chocolate, and let cool on parchment paper.

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Eat a few to ensure quality, then hide from your family and eat the rest.

ChocolatePBHearts-9

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Hearts
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

1/4 cup (2 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups peanut butter (preferably homemade)
1 cup chocolate wafer cookie crumbs, or graham crackers if preferred
3 cups confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
10 tablespoons (5 ounces) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
12 ounces dark chocolate (60 to 72%), coarsely chopped

Make the filling: In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and peanut butter together until combined. Add the wafer cookie crumbs and beat for 10 seconds. Add the sugar and butter, and mix on the lowest speed until it stops floating off everywhere, then increase the speed until the ingredients are combined. Scrape down the whole bowl well, then mix again. The mixture will be quite sturdy and a little dry — perfect for shaping. Set it aside while you prepare the coating.

Make the coating: Melt the chocolate either over a double boiler, stirring until it is completely smooth or in a microwave in 30 then 10 second increments, stirring before you start it again until it is completely smooth. Let it cool to tepid (about 95 degrees) while you shape the peanut butter centers. [Alternately, you can temper the chocolate (fairly simply instructions here) so it won’t melt in your hands as easily.]

Assemble the candies: Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Either fill heart or other candy molds, or scoop out slightly more than one tablespoon’s worth of filling (their suggestion; I used a scoop that made them a little smaller) and use your hands to form it into a ball. Place the ball on the prepared sheet and repeat the process until all of the candies have been shaped. They can sit close to each other but make sure they are not touching.

Using a fork or large skewer, dip each ball into the chocolate and roll it about so that the entire heart/ball is coated. Play around with a few practice pieces; I found it easiest to stick the skewer in the side, angle the bowl I was using towards it and make sure it became submerged as I rolled the candy around. But don’t fuss too much; even the “ugly” ones won’t go to waste.

Chill the candies until they are set, about 30 minutes.

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Posted by on February 22, 2013 in Dessert

 

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