The wonderful flavor marriage of peanut butter and chocolate is well-known. This version of the classic, commercial peanut butter cups are tastier, and dare I say it… healthier! Once you make these delicious morsels, you will never buy the inferior commercial ones again. These were added to my delicious homemade chocolate selection.
The shell is made with dark (bitter/semi-sweet) chocolate, and the filling is made with peanut butter and a little sugar. The best part of making things at home is that you can control the quality of the ingredients, and the relative amount of sugar added. I often find that store-bought anything is too sweet for me, and that includes savory bread!
There are no specific quantities given in this recipe, just guidelines. The relative amounts will depend on the size of chocolate (candy) mold, and how many you want to make. As a guideline, I would use a chocolate (candy) mold that has cavities large enough to hold about 1 teaspoon filling. Also, it’s easier to temper chocolate in larger quantities, say at least 450 g (1 lb) – nothing is wasted, you simply use as much as you require, then save the remaining for your next chocolate experiment.
DARK CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CUPS
- dark (semi-sweet/bitter) chocolate*
- smooth peanut butter
- 1 pinch salt (if your peanut butter is unsalted)
- icing (confectioners) sugar
* I used 85% Alter Eco chocolate
- chocolate (candy) mold, large enough to hold one teaspoon filling
- chocolate (candy) thermometer
1. Make the peanut butter filling by mixing together just enough peanut butter, sugar and salt, if using, to taste**.
2. Gently heat 2.5 cm (1 inch) water in a saucepan. Place ⅔ of the dark chocolate into a bowl and set over the barely simmering water (over very
low heat), make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water.
3. Stir chocolate until melted and the thermometer reads 43°C (110°F), then immediately remove from the saucepan. Wipe the bottom of the bowl
dry, and add remaining chocolate and stir until the mixture reaches 28°C (82°F).
4. Place the bowl back onto the pan of barely simmering water, and heat the dark chocolate, stirring continuously until the mixture reaches
31-32°C (88-90°F). The chocolate is now tempered and ready to be used. You will have to keep the chocolate at this temperature range whilst working with the chocolate. You can do this by placing the bowl back onto the pan of barely simmering water for a few seconds, then removing it again, but remember to constantly stir it.
5. Brush a thick layer of chocolate onto the insides of the cavities of the chocolate (candy) mold using a clean paintbrush. Transfer to the freezer to set for 1-2 minutes. Repeat the layering for about 3-4 times. On the last coat, level out the rims of the chocolate “cups” using a bench scraper, then freeze for 2 minutes.
6. Gently pop out the chocolate “cups” using a twisting action, and transfer them onto a wooden board, cavity side up. If it’s a little difficult to pop the “cups” out of the mold, simply place the whole contraption back into the freezer and wait for 1-2 minutes, then try again.
7. Using a very small spoon, fill the “cups” with the peanut butter, leaving 3 mm (1/8 inch) space at the top.
8. Using a clean spoon, drop just enough melted chocolate to fill the chocolate cup. Chill in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before turning the chocolates the right side up. Pop into your mouth and enjoy!
** I used 2 tablespoons peanut butter and 1 level teaspoon icing (confectioners sugar).