Sunday, June 12, 2011

Alfred A. Knopf Peanut Butter Candy

I've been looking forward to and dreading this recipe for a while. Looking forward to because, well, look at that ingredient line-up (do you like the powdered sugar wrestler?)! English digestive biscuits (graham crackers, more or less), crunchy peanut butter straight from the USA (Julia orders it from her friends whenever they're there), Valrhona chocolate straight from a run to G. Detou because I was out. Butter.

Dreading because, well, you see the ingredient line-up. Eight ounces each of butter, sugar, cookies, chocolate. A bit more even of peanut butter. That's going to taste good. Maybe a bit too good...

OK, so the bottom layer is not very photogenic. Never fear--it's delicious. If you like crunchy buttery peanut candy, that is. And it takes about 2 minutes to put together: once the butter is melted and the graham crackers are crushed, you're pretty much done.

Then all you have to do is melt some chocolate. This is milk chocolate with a 40% cocoa content, and it was perfect. If you don't like things too sweet, I would maybe use 1/3 dark chocolate (start melting that first) and 2/3 milk chocolate. If you like things sweet, get out the Hershey's.

You pour that on top and refrigerate it.

Then you cut it into tiny squares and begin taste-testing. And have your children taste test and say, "Oh, my gosh, Mommy, I love you!" And send said children off to parties laden with this candy because it must not be allowed to stay in the house.
I'm pretty sure I've had this kind of candy before. It's sweet and very rich--like a really excellent Reese's cup. The piece and a half I ate were delicious, but I don't think I'll be able to eat much more--it's just too much for me. That's probably a good thing.

So here's the recipe. Make it when you have 5 minutes and the right ingredients and a heap of willpower.

Alfred A. Knopf Peanut Butter Candy

1 cup (8 oz.) melted butter
2 cups (8 oz.) graham cracker crumbs
2 cups (8 oz.) powdered sugar (Maida calls for 2-1/2 cups, or 10 oz.)
1 cup (9.25 oz.) chunky peanut butter
8 oz. milk chocolate

Line an 8-inch square pan with aluminum foil. In a large bowl (maybe the one you melted the butter in), mix together the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and peanut butter until well combined. Spread into a smooth layer in the prepared pan. Melt the chocolate in the microwave--one minute in 30-second pulses should be enough. Pour the melted chocolate over the peanut butter mixture. Spread in a smooth layer over the peanut butter mixture. Refrigerate for at least an hour, then unmold from the pan/foil and cut into small squares. I like this cold, but Maida says to serve it at room temperature. Either way, enjoy--and give this away fast!

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