The holidays are speeding their way to us – I know this because Halloween came upon us so fiercely that I never had time to put together the Inigo Montoya costume that I so very much wanted to wear. Knowing this, Streusel and I decided it was high time we did some planning. With that in mind, this November is all about edible gifts – little presents we can give that are tasty, but not too fussy or expensive. With a bit of planning now, we can hopefully avoid some chaos next month.
I’ve mentioned once or twice before, I have a thing for peanut butter… I feel like I must’ve been good in a previous life and therefore peanut butter was bestowed upon me. Love the stuff. Can’t get enough of it.
Due to my love, this means that jars of randomly flavored nut butters occupy a good portion of our cabinet space. We discovered this Espresso Cocoa Nib Peanut Butter in a gift shop about 8 months ago. I couldn’t resist buying, and after a few spoonfuls – and in agreement that it’s delicious – I wasn’t entirely sure when/how/with what to eat it… until now [insert dramatic music here].
Because what – what, my friends?! – could go better sandwiched between layers of thick chocolate other than crunchy, coffee-tinged, creamy and sweet peanut butter?! Well, good people, I’m here to tell you that *nothing* can be better (also, that it’s easy to make and will be a great gift that doesn’t take much effort but will please your people to no end).
Part of what’s brilliant about this peanut butter is that it’s not very sweet, so adding a bit of powdered sugar – to sweeten and thicken it up the filling – works perfectly. It’s covered in dark chocolate so it’s not overwhelmingly sweet but still an amazing treat. They are also rich enough that a gift of 4-6 is the perfect amount for a holiday gift.
Place 12 small baking cups in an 8 x 8 baking pan, and set aside.
Put the chocolate and coconut oil in a microwave safe bowl, and place in microwave. To melt, cook on half power for 30 seconds, then stir – chocolate will not be melted at this point – and repeat, continue cooking/stirring until the chocolate is completely melted.
Pour about 3/4 teaspoon of chocolate in to each of the baking cups (I used my smallest cookies scoop, and just didn’t fill it entirely), and place in the fridge. Allow to harden for about 10 minutes.
In the meantime, place the peanut butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer, and mix until fully combined. Be sure to taste – this was plenty sweet for me, but if you’d like yours a little sweeter, add a bit more powdered sugar.
Roll the peanut butter in to 12 small balls –about 3/4 tablespoon or so each. The dough will be a little bit sticky, but if you very slightly moisten your hands, it’s easier to work with.
Remove the cups from the fridge – they should have firmed up by now – and place a ball of peanut butter on each. Flatten down each dough ball, and then cover with melted chocolate, so that it covers the peanut butter entirely.
Sprinkle with a bit of kosher salt, and place in the fridge for about an hour, to fully firm up.
These candies may get a little melty if stored on a countertop (especially in a warm house), so you may want to store in the fridge. Also (personal opinion here), they’re extra delicious when cold from the fridge.
Strudel and Streusel are two friends living in different cities, sharing a love of baking (and butter) through this blog. With Streusel in Denver, and Strudel in Seattle, we've found our little site to be a great way to stay in touch, share recipes we love, and talk about experiences in our respective cities.