I wasn’t intending for my blog to be about food, but being the food enthusiast that I am, I can’t help but start sharing some of what I’ve been making. For the 10 months that Sean and I were in a long-distance relationship, I cooked for myself but only did something non-lazy or slightly elaborate when I was going to someone’s house for dinner. Liz knows that one of my favorite things to do was cook with her! Now that I live with Sean, I find myself constantly wanting to go all out with my food preparation. I love him, and I love to cook for him. He’s in Australia right now on a business trip, and I’m sitting in our toasty living room (I indulge in some Thai heat while the Canadian AC Master is away), very satisfied with the concoction I came up with this evening. With some inspiration from a couple of pins on Pinterest (wow, that site is addicting), my new heart-shaped silicone baking mold, a few ingredients I picked up at the grocery store this evening, and this bottle of amaretto Sean gave me for my birthday, I created Kate’s Amaretto Peanut Butter Cups.
Here’s my recipe (for 16 2X2″ hearts; you could make them bigger in a cupcake tin — just double or triple the recipe and spray some Pam if it’s not non-stick!). Note that I used 99% dark chocolate and some sugar in the raw. I’m sure you could just use your favorite percentage of dark chocolate, which already has sugar in it. And you do not have to use raw sugar; it just adds a little crunch.
3T creamy peanut butter
2T coconut milk
1-2T amaretto (optional)
3 oz. dark chocolate
1-5T sugar in the raw (depending on how sweet you want these and your dark chocolate percentage) + a little more for sprinkling
1. Prepare the peanut butter mixture: stir together the peanut butter, coconut milk, and amaretto in a small bowl with a spoon. Set aside.
2. Chop up the chocolate into little pieces; this will ensure that the chocolate melts smoothly. Make sure that no water touches your chocolate or cooking utensils. Apparently this can cause chunks!*
3. Bring a saucepan of water to a simmer, then put a glass bowl on top (one that fits snugly) to make a double-boiler. Don’t let the water touch the bowl. Keeping the stove on low heat, add the chocolate and the sugar to the bowl. Use a plastic spatula to stir the chocolate around as it melts. This will take a few minutes.
4. Once the chocolate is melted, take the double-boiler off the heat, and put it on the counter. Keep the bowl over the hot water so the chocolate doesn’t harden. Scoop about 1/2 teaspoon of chocolate into the little hearts, just enough to cover the bottoms.
5. Scoop about 1/2 teaspoon of the peanut butter mixture on top of your first layer of chocolate. Don’t worry about smoothing it out — a glob is OK!
6. Fill in the rest of the hearts with more melted chocolate. The chocolate should fill the hearts so that it is flush with the surface of the mold.
7. Sprinkle with some sugar, and put them in the freezer to set. This will only take a few minutes.
P.S. I will not put photos of these wonders until I can figure out how to take more flattering photos of chocolate. Where’s Kevin Gary when you need him? UPDATE: Sean did a nice job, huh?
*Most of my melting chocolate directions come from Elizabeth LaBau at this web address.