Wednesday, March 12, 2014

sprinkled milk chocolate peanut butter cups

I gave up on being serious blogger when I got accepted into my dental hygiene program. Let's face it, it's too damn hard scheduling free time when I'm usually at work, school, or Starbucks. Seriously, though.. never home. It's tough sometimes, but I'm still making and sharing sweets. It has kept me from fully losing my mind and also, conveniently, keeps my future career in demand. Win, win. I haven't been able to dabble into some super creative baking adventures in a while, but I'm hoping that will change soon.. Like tomorrow since my last midterm was today. There's two more days of school this week but, mentally, I'm already on Spring Break.

Remember that time I made those Pretzel-Topped Peanut Butter Cups? Well, guess what? I discovered they are even cuter with a little pop of color, instead. I mean, it wasn't too much of a surprise since a little bit of color is just like a little bit of sparkle.. always better.

Sprinkled Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Yields about 60 mini cups

3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 1/2- 4 cups milk chocolate chips

1. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment, mix together creamy peanut butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla until well combined.
2. In a microwavable bowl, melt 2 cups of milk chocolate chips in 30 second intervals until completely melted and smooth. Stir in between to distribute the heat and make sure not to overheat the chocolate!
3. Spoon a dollop of the melted chocolate into each of the cups of a silicone candy mold. Spread the chocolate around, creating an even, semi-thin later of chocolate covering all sides and crevices.
4. In each cup coated with chocolate, place a rounded ball of the peanut butter filling mixture in the center of the cup. The amount of peanut butter filling will depend on your specific candy mold. I personally like a good amount of peanut butter filling in each cup.
5. Stir around your melted chocolate (Hopefully, it hasn't hardened by the time you get to this step. Re-melt if necessary.). Spoon and smooth it down into each cup to fill completely and cover the peanut butter filling.
6. The chocolate won't hardened instantaneously, so you have some time to fill them all first. Then add your colored sprinkles on top to your liking.
7. Place the mold into the freezer for a couple minutes until chocolate has solidified again. 
8. Pop the peanut butter cups out and they are ready to eat!
9. Repeat from Step 2 with the rest of the chocolate.

My candy mold only makes 30 at a time, and the recipe will definitely make about double. However, I still like to work with only half the amount of chocolate at a time. It's more manageable, less messy, and I can avoid having an I Love Lucy moment. I hope you caught that old-school t.v. reference or else it was completely pointless.

The other change I made to this recipe is the amount of chocolate. In making these peanut butter cups again, I found that it's important to have more chocolate than you think you'll need. Just go with it. It works. I use it all.

Also, I used rainbow-colored nonpareil sprinkles. Back in the day, when I worked as a baker, I absolutely hated these sprinkles. Mostly because there was a time when I hosted birthday parties at the shop. Let me tell you, kids just do awful things with these sprinkles. Awful. It made me pretty miserable. But now that I'm not doing that anymore, we've sorted out our problems and reconnected. Yes, I'm still talking about sprinkles! These have just the right amount of crunch and color to make these peanut butter cups extra adorable. But again, use whatever will make you happy!

Happy Wednesday, lovelies! I kind of miss you.  xo

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