Peanut Butter Marshmallow Brownies

July 009

This recipe caught my eye several weeks ago. I was searching for a dessert recipe to use up a can of Sweetened Condensed milk and was in the mood for somthing different than my usual Magic Cookie Bars. This reipce combines several of my favorite flavors: Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Marshmallows. Another great thing about this recipe is that it uses a boxed cake mix keeping the ingredient list small.

While these were a breeze to whip up, it was a little time consuming. First you need to make and par bake the chocolate base. Next you need to make the filling, pour over the partially baked crust and then bake again. From start to finish these took about an hour for me, which on a hot summer day can feel like torture.

I also had a difficult time evenly spreading the sticky marshmallow/peanut butter filling over the crust. The filling was thick and way to hard to spread even with a buttered knife/spoon/spatula (maybe I was just having an off day). I ended up plopping spoonfulls of filling all over the crust and then with a greased knife did the best I could at trying make sure the crust was covered entirely. This worked well as the filling did thin and spread while baking.

The flavor of these bars made up for my frustrations while preparing them. They came out of the oven smelling faintly of peanut butter with bubbling marshmallow peeking through the chocolate topping just begging to be enjoyed. I waited about 30 minutes and then ate one warm. Don’t overbake as they are supposed to be a bit gooey when you take them out, they will firm up a bit as they cool.

The crust was sturdy but not hard, the filling had a subtly noticable peanut butter flavor and very similar to cheesecake in texture but gooier. Overall these were really great brownies and were enjoyed by all, even the non-peanut butter lovers (yes they do exist). While these brownies were yummy, they don’t beat out my favorite!

I did adapt this recipe a bit (based on my preferences and reviews) as reflected below and would recomend you do the same. Next time I will add some chopped Reese’s PB cups over the top of the brownies the last 10 minutes of baking to marry together the two flavors more fully.

I rate these brownies an 8

3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk, divided
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted and cooled
1/4 cup milk
1 (18 1/4 ounce) package devil’s food cake mix
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 (7 ounce) jar marshmallow creme (about 1-3/4 cups)
1/2 cup peanut butter chip
Directions
1Set oven to 350 degrees.
2Grease a 13″ x 9-inch baking pan.
3In a bowl, combine 1/4 cup condensed milk, butter, 1/4 cup milk, cake mix and the egg; mix to combine well (batter will be stiff).
4Press TWO-THIRDS of the batter into the bottom of the prepared baking pan (using floured hands); pat down evenly, the layer will be thin.
5Bake for 10 minutes.
6Meanwhile, combine the remaining 1/2 cup condensed milk and the marshmallow creme in a bowl; stir in the peanut butter chips/morsels.
7Remove the pan from the oven; spread the marshmallow mixture evenly over the brownie layer.
8Carefully drop the remaining batter by the spoonfuls over the marshmallow mixture.
9Bake for another 30 minutes.
10Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.
Peanut Butter Marshallow Brownies
adapted from here

3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk, divided (I used 1 whole can)
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted and cooled
1/4 cup milk
1 (18 1/4 ounce) package devil’s food cake mix (I used Triple Chocolate Cake Mix)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 (7 ounce) jar marshmallow creme
(1 1/4 cups Creamy Peanut Butter)
1/2 cup peanut butter chip (I HIGHLY recommend Reese’s brand chips)
(1/4 cup Milk Chocolate Chips)
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Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Line a 9×13 baking pan with foil and lighlty spray with PAM.
In a bowl, combine 1/4 cup condensed milk, butter, 1/4 cup milk, cake mix and the egg; mix to combine well (batter will be very stiff).
Gently press about 2/3 of the dough into the bottom of the prepared baking pan (using floured hands if needed); pat down evenly, the layer will be thin.July 011
Bake for 10 minutes.
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While crust bakes, combine the remaining  condensed milk, marshmallow creme and Peanut Butter in a bowl; gently fold in the peanut butter chips and chocolate chips.
Remove the crust from the oven; spread the peanut butter marshmallow mixture evenly over the brownie layer.
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Carefully drop the remaining batter by the spoonfuls evenly over the peanut butter marshmallow mixture. Press down slightly.
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Bake for another 25-30 minutes or until edges are set and center is slightly gooey but not raw. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.

Thick and Chewy Triple Chocolate Cookies

May 026While searching for a new brownie recipe to try I came across this recipe that I had bookmarked from one of my favorite cookbooks, America’s Test Kitchen. This has been a great all-around-cookbook. It has everthing from salads to desserts and I have been more than pleased with the outcome of each recipe I have tried. These cookies are no different.  I am usually not a fan of chocolate cookies, there are a few exceptions, but really I would rather have a brownie any day than a chocolate cookie. These, however, satisfied me more than any brownie could have. 

My oh my. These cookies are like a  rich, chocolatey, chewy brownie only in cookie form. Each cookie is studded with chocolate chips which only serve to intensify the chocolatey flavor. I adapted the recipe a bit based on what I had in my kitchen and my own preferences (with my changes they are more like a quintuple chocolate cookie).  These cookies take a little longer to make than most, first you have to melt and cool chocoalte before adding it to the butter/sugar mixture, then after mixing the dough you need to let it firm up for at least 30 minutes (could be sped up by chilling in the fridge) at room temperature. Let me tell you though, if your sweet tooth is calling, these will surely answer and are well worth the little extra time and effort making the dough. 

The dough itself is rich and fudgelike and gives you a sweet glimpse of what the finished cookies will look and taste like. Chocolate is the star of the show so I would suggest that you use a fair to good quality chocolate for melting and adding to the dough. The chocolate flavor is only deepened and enhanced by the addition of Instant Espresso powder. I know some people may be leary about adding it, but as noted, I added less than called for and could not taste it one bit, neither did anyone who ate devoured inhaled these little gems.  These kind of remind me of Outrageous Brownies, only in cookie form. 

The cookies bake up soft with slighlty shiny tops after they cool. They are fragile right out of the  oven so it is best to let them rest a bit before transfering them to a rack to cool. With chocolate cookies it is hard to tell when the cookies are finished baking many bakers tend to overbake them resulting in tough, hard, dry cookies. I baked mine for 10 minutes and 30 seconds and they came out PERFECT. Chewy, chocolatey, rich and gooey from the chunks of chocolate in each cookie. I could not have asked for more from a brownie or cookie. 

After storing these at room temperature overnight in a sealed container they are still chewy; firmer, but chewy none the less. Next time I might add some chopped Reese’s Peanut Butter cups because that is how me and my peeps like to roll: on the Peanut butter train all the way to chunky town.  These would also be great with chunks of Oreo cookies or toasted walnuts added to the batter. 

If you love chocolate and are looking for a nice and rich, flavorful brownie or cookie recipe, I highly recommend you give this recipe a try and see for yourself the glorious chocolateyness that they behold.

I rate this recipe a 9 

 

Double-Chocolate Cookies, Thick and Chewy Cookies
Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies
To melt the chocolate in a microwave, heat at 50 percent power for 2 minutes, stir, then continue heating at 50 percent power for 1 more minute. If not completely melted, heat an additional 30 to 45 seconds at 50 percent power. We recommend using a spring-loaded ice cream scoop to scoop the dough. Resist the urge to bake the cookies longer than indicated; they may appear underbaked at first but will firm up as they cool.
Ingredients:
2 cups (10 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
16 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons instant coffee or espresso powder
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed (10 1/2 ounces) light brown sugar
1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
Directions:
Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl; set aside.
Melt chocolate in medium heatproof bowl set over pan of almost-simmering water, stirring once or twice, until smooth; remove from heat. Beat eggs and vanilla lightly with fork, sprinkle coffee powder over to dissolve, and set aside.
In bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat butter at medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 5 seconds. Beat in sugars until combined, about 45 seconds; mixture will look granular. Reduce speed to low and gradually beat in egg mixture until incorporated, about 45 seconds. Add chocolate in steady stream and beat until combined, about 40 seconds. Scrape bottom and sides of bowl with rubber spatula. With mixer at low speed, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not overbeat. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until consistency is scoopable and fudgelike, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Leaving about 1 1/2 inches between each ball, scoop dough onto parchment-lined cookie sheets with 1 3/4-inch ice cream scoop.
Bake, reversing position of baking sheets halfway through baking (from top to bottom and front to back), until edges of cookies have just begun to set but centers are still very soft, about 10 minutes. Cool cookies on sheets about 10 minutes, slide parchment with cookies onto wire racks, and cool to room temperature. Cover one baking sheet with new piece of parchment paper. Scoop remaining dough onto parchment-lined sheet, bake, and cool as directed. Remove cooled cookies from parchment with wide metal spatula and serve.
Variation — Thick and Chewy Triple-Chocolate Cookies:
If you like bursts of warm melted chocolate in your cookies [and who doesn’t? —Alex], include chocolate chips in the batter. The addition of chips will slightly increase the yield of the cookies.
Follow recipe for Thick and Chewy Double-Chocolate Cookies, adding 12 ounces (about 2 cups) semisweet chocolate chips to batter after dry ingredients are incorporated in step 3.
 Thick and Chewy Triple Chocolate Cookies
2 cups AP flour
1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (the original recipe calls for all semi-sweet chocoalte) 
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons instant coffee or espresso powder (I used 1 1/2 teaspoons)
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed (10 1/2 ounces) light brown sugar
1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
1 cup Milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup Semi-sweet chocolate chips 
*Could use all semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips, whatever you have on hand. The original calls for all semi-sweet chips
In a small bowl wisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. 
Melt the semi-sweet and bittersweet chopped chocolate in medium heatproof bowl. Be careful not to scorch or burn chocolate. Set aside to cool.
In a small bowl wisk the eggs, vanilla and Espresso powder until combined. 
In a mixing bowl, beat the butter until smooth and creamy. Add sugar and beat another minute. Add the egg mixture until well mixed. Gently add the melted and cooled chocolate and beat until combinedMay 029 

Slowly add the flour mixture and beat until just combined. Do not overbeat.
Cover with dough with lid or plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until consistency is scoopable and fudgelike, about 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350.
 Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop dough onto sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges are set but centers are soft. 
Allow cookies to cool on sheets about 10 minutes before transfering to racks to cool completly. 

Chocolate Intensity

february-1202

Wow, if the title of this dessert is not enough to tell you to make this then let me assure you that you must make this dessert. Do so now. It is so simple, so rich, so chocolatey, so perfect that you can not afford not to make this. My pictures do not do this dessert justice so I will send you to pictures that will knock the sweet bajeezes out of ya.  This is no ordinary ‘cake’, because there is no flour in this recipe its texture falls closer to that of a cheesecake but more dense.

This is the perfect dessert for any chocolate lover or lover of a damn good dessert. It has a gorgeous presentation without being pretentious, you can dress it up with some berries or white chocolate drizzle or keep it simple and plain (I use this term loosely). This exceeded my expectations (and I had pretty high expectations) and impressed everyone who tried it.  I would describe the experience of eating this cake as nothing short of bringing your tastebuds and tounge orgasmic pleasure.  So rich, so creamy with the perfect balance of sweetness, creaminess and richness. The chocolate ganache was the perfect way to top off this dessert and I would not skip it! 

I thought the amount of coffee called for in the recipe would over power the flavor, but I trusted the recipe and followed it to the letter. I would not change a thing. I think the coffee enhanced the chocolate flavor without overpowering it, infact, no one who ate a piece of this perfection noticed any coffee flavor at all.  Of course they wouldn’t have been able to tell me if they had because their eyes were rolling back in their heads while their tounges licked every last chocolate morsel off of their spoons. I ate a peice (a little goes a long way) at room temperature as well as chilled and prefer it cold from the fridge!

I rate this recipe a 10
 
Chocolate Intensity
Trish Boyle’s The Cake Book

Makes one 9-inch cake

8 ounces bittersweet chocolate (preferably 62% cocoa), finely chopped
12 ounces (3 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brewed coffee
6 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350º F. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round cake pan. Line the bottom with a parchment round and butter the parchment. (If you’re using a pan with a removable bottom like a springform, make sure to wrap the pan with 2 or 3 layers of foil.)

Place chopped chocolate in a large bowl.

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, stir butter, sugar and coffee until the butter is melted and february-111mixture is boiling. Pour the hot mixture over your chopped chocolate. Let stand for 1 minute then gently stir until chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.

In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs vigorously until blended. Whisk in the vanilla and salt. Slowly add about 3/4 cup hot chocolate mixture to the eggs, whisking constantly. (Tempering the eggs with a little bit of the hot chocolate mixture will prevent “scrambled eggs” when combining the two mixtures.) Add the egg mixture to the hot chocolate mixture and whisk to combine well.

Strain the batter through a sieve (to catch any cooked egg bits) and then pour batter into prepared pan. Set cake pan in a large roasting pan and fill the pan with enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the cake pan. Bake for 35-45 minutes, until the center is shiny and set but still a bit jiggly. Transfer cake pan to a cooling rack and cool for 20 minutes.

Run a thin knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake. Place a cardboard round on top of the pan and invert the cake onto it. Remove pan and carefully remove the parchment paper. Refrigerate the cake for at least 2 hours before glazing with chocolate glaze.
*I chilled overnight before glazing and then chilled for 2 hours more before serving. It was PERFECT!

Bittersweet Ganache
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
2/3 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract

Place chopped chocolate in a medium bowl.

In a small saucepan, bring the cream to a boil. Remove pan from heat and add the chopped chocolate. Let stand for 1 minute then gently stir until chocolate is melted and the glaze is smooth. Gently stir in the vanilla. Transfer glaze to a small bowl and cover the surface of the glaze with plastic wrap and let cool for 5 minutes at room temperature before using.

To glaze the cake:

Place the chilled cake, still on the cake round, on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Slowly pour the hot glaze onto the center of the cake. Smooth the glaze over the top and sides, letting the excess drip onto the baking sheet.

Scrape the extra glaze from the baking sheet and put it in a small ziploc bag. Seal the bag and cut a tiny hole in one of the bottom corners. Gently squeeze the bag over the top of the cake to drizzle the glaze in a decorative pattern. Refrigerate the cake at least one hour before serving.

*I chilled the cake overnight and LOVED the texture and flavor of it. I actually prefer to eat it straight from the fridge, nice and chilled! The texture is smooth, rich and creamy and holds up well while eating.

Oreo Fudge Bars

baked-goods-0021

After a disappointing cookie recipe last week, I decided to hunt down a recipe that sounded like a winner. I found this recipe on allrecipes.com and tweaked it a bit based on my own preferences and the reviews of those who have made them.

I changed the name of these bars to better reflect their goodness. These bars are rich, fudgey and full of Oreo goodness! Trust me when I say to cut these bars small as a little goes a long way! Despite being so rich and fudgey, they are not overly sweet in my opinion. Don’t get me wrong, they are definately sweet and will satisfy a craving in no time but not so much so that your teeth hurt just eating one.

If you are not a chocolate lover (I know there are a few of you weirdos out there) do not make these as you will be highly disappointed! However, if you need an easy recipe that is rich and fudgey these are for you. These bars will be perfect for the holidays and I can’t wait t make them with the Winter Red Oreos or the Peppermint Oreos. I may substitue the Andes Peppermint baking chips on top instead of using the mini chocolate chips to enhance the Peppermint flavor for the holidays. The only downside is they will not ship well and should really be kept chilled until a few hours before serving.  When serving for dessert I recommend cutting into squares and drizzling melted white chocolate over the bars, as I have done in the picture below. What a pretty presentation for such a simple recipe. MMMM good.

I rate this recipe a 9

Oreo Fudge Bars
adapted from allrecipes.com
1 16oz. package of Oreo cookies 
1 stick butter, melted
1/4 tsp satl
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk (I used Fat Free)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips (could use another 1/2 cup  semi-sweet chips if you like)
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips 
 

Preheat the oven to 325. baked-goods-015
Line a 9×13 pan with foil and lightly spray with PAM.
Set aside 6 Oreo cookies for the toppings.
In a small food processor grind the rest of the cookies. If you don’t have a food processor, just pound with a rolling pin until the cookies are fine crumbs. Add the salt to the crumbs and stir to combine.
Melt butter and gently stir together with the cookie crumb mixutre. 
Press firmly into the bottom of the prepared pan.  
Coarsely chop the remaining cookies into chunks and set aside.
Over a double boiler or in the microwave, melt 3/4 cup semi-sweet and 1/2 cup milk chocoalte chips together with the condensed milk and vanilla.
Stir frequently until smooth.
Spread evenly over the prepared cookie crust.
Sprinkle the mini chocolate chips and the Oreo cookies chunks over the top of the filling. Press down gently into the chocolate topping. 
Bake for 20-22 minutes oven.
Allow to cool on counter for 1 hour. Chill in fridge until completely cold and set before cutting into bars or it will make a big mess.
*These are not too great hot from the oven but are great after chilling and the filling has set!

Swirled Cake Bars

This recipe comes out of a handwritten cookbook of my grandma’s recipes. I received a copy of her her favorite recipes including her Oatmeal Fudge Bars. I love this cookbook and everytime I make a recipe from it I picture my grandma in her kitchen (with two stoves/ovens) baking bread and goodies each day. I loved to help her and can’t wait until I have children and grandchildren to create memories with them and share my passion for cooking and baking.

These bars a cross between cake and a brownie. They are not as light and fluffy as cake but don’t have that true uber chocolate flavor like a brownie would (even cake-like brownies). I made these for movie night with some friends. I wanted something chocolately but not overly so or too rich. I also wanted something that we could eat with our hands and not need a bowl and fork/spoon. I had recently made cupcakes and was not in the mood to make them again. I wanted a bar recipe but after paging through my cookbooks I did not find one that jumped out at me. That is when I reached for my grandma’s cookbook and the title caught my eye. That was exactly what I was looking for!

These bars have a more dense texture than cake but in a good way.  I like the fact that they incorporate chocolate into the batter without it dominating the overall flavor of the bar. It is like a marbled cake but in bar form.  The batter was very thick and I had a difficult time ‘swirling’ the two together. I swirled very little for fear of mixing the two batter together making the two distinct colors merge into a lightly colored cake bar.

These were eaten up by my friends in no time, even by the non-sweet eaters. I will admit that we did eat a few after the movie with a scoop of icecream,  hot fudge and toasted walnuts on top. I have to say that I loved the texture of these bars with the icecream and hot fudge better than a cookie.

I would make these again. Next time I might add mini chocolate chips or toasted walnuts (as called for in the recipe) to the batter. My swirling technique was not the best with these bars because the batter was thick. Next time I think I will swirl more than I did this time, for appearance sake. Either way, these are worth a try and are easy to modify to your family’s preferences (toasted nuts, M&M’s, chocolate chips, PB chips, toasted coconut etc.) These would even be good frosted!

I rate this recipe a 7.5

Swirled Cake Bars
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup shortening (or butter)(I used 1/2 cup shortening 1/4 cup butter)
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla
3 eggs
1 cup nuts (I omitted because I had none)
2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted (I used 1 oz semi-sweet and 1 oz bittersweet)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees
Lightly spray and flour a 9×13 pan with PAM.
In a small bowl wisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. In large mixing bowl cream the shortening and sugar. Add the vanilla and eggs. Beat only to combine. Mix in the flour mixture and beat at medium speed for 2 minutes.
Spoon half the batter into another bowl. Fold the 1/2 cup of nuts into the vanilla batter. Gently pour batter into prepared pan.
To the remaining batter fold in the melted chocolate until incorporated. Gently drop spoonfulls of the chocolate batter over the vanilla batter in the pan. Using a greased knife, cut through the two batter to create swirl patter. Top with remaining nuts.
Bake for 20-30 minutes or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Do not overbake.
*Mine baked in 24 minutes.

Intense Chocolate Shock Cookies

I am a firm believer that in order to have a trully ‘Chocolate’ cookie it should include melted chocolate in the dough and not just cocoa powder (a combination of both is also accepted).  While I love cookies and chocolate, I am not a huge fan of Chocolate Cookies (gasp! I know). I do however enjoy Chocolate cookies with a bowl of good old vanilla icecream. MMM good.

I found this recipe on a piece of paper taped to the back cover of an old church cookbook I bought at a yard sale last weekend. The paper was splattered with chocolate batter and had grease spots from melted butter. I knew these had to be yummy as the worn recipe was a sign that these were made often. I was sold (plus, I have a soft spot for old hand written recipes, blogs and the internet depersonalize (word???) so many family treasured recipes that whenever I find an old hand-written one, my heart jumps a bit. I feel like a highschool girl getting ready for her first date unsure of  how it will turn out. Wishing for the best but preparing for the worst. Knowing that either way, it will be an experience none the less).

I made these to take to a work picnic and they were very well received. The recipe underlines “Do not overbake” so I erred on the side of caution. The texture of these cookies were great! Once set they had chewey (not cakey) interiors with slightly crisp edges. The taste is not as tooth-acheingly sweet as I would have thought. I think the bittersweet chocolate mellows out the sweetness and provides a rich chocolate flavor. The milk chocolate chips I used balanced out the semisweet and bittersweet batter perfectly, though I am sure semisweet or dark chocolate would be equally as good.

Next time I make these I may add 1/2 tsp espresso powder to deeped the chocolate flavor more and maybe add some walnuts. As is they are very good, adults and kids both said how great they were. Four people asked for the recipe, so that is always a sign of a good recipe. I am not sure I would make these again unless I was taking them for others to enjoy. Like I said, I am not a huge fan of chocolate cookies. That did not stop me however, from enjoying four of these (not at the same time) with scoops of vanilla icecream.

I rate these cookies an  8.5

Intense Chocolate Shock Cookies
source unknown
4oz. bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped
4 oz.  semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped
4 TBS butter, cut into chunks
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups chocolate chips (I used milk chocolate)

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a microwave save bowl combine the chopped chocolate and butter. Heat in microwave stirring every 20 seconds. Heat until almost melted, stirring until smooth and melted. Do NOT overheat chocolate mixture.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs, brown sugar, and vanilla on high speed until light and fluffy (about 2-4 minutes).
Reduce speed to low and slowly add the melted chocolate mixture. Beat to combine. Add the flour mixture until and mix until just combined.
Gently fold in chocolate chips.
Allow dough to firm up for 10 minutes before baking.
Drop dough by tablespoons onto prepared baking sheet. Bake 10-13 minutes or until tops are shiny, center is soft but edges are set. Do NOT overbake.
Allow to cool on sheet for 5 minutes before transfering to rack to cool compleletly.

Chocolate and Peanut Butter Oat Bars

I love to bake, that is no surprise but during the hot and humid summer months I do not like to turn on my oven (unless I have to). Because my sweet tooth cares not about the weather, I need to find recipes to satisfy it but not heat the house to temperatures comparible to those Hell. ha ha.

The internet came to my rescue yesterday and I found a recipe that included two of my favorite treats: Peanut butter and Chocolate. Food of the Gods I say.  I did adapt the recipe a bit, my changes in parenthesis, and would do the same in the future as I felt they turned out great!! In fact I have made them three times in two days!

This recipe comes together in about 10 minutes but needs about 3 hours in the fridge to chill and set. These bars are gooey and need to be eaten with a bowl and sppon if not chilled/set but still very good. I like to take them out about 15 minutes before serving to soften a bit but still keep their shape. I served these to family and three people demanded the recipe. That is when I know it is good!! So good, I actually had to make these twice yesterday because the first pan was eaten before dinner in about 10 minutes! That is another reason to love the recipe, you can whip up another batch in no time flat! They chilled while we cooked and ate dinner and were perfectly set and ready to eat afterward.

*Next time I may sprinkle some chopped Reese’s Peanut Butter cups on top with the oat topping to enhance the peanut butter flavor!!

I give these bars a 9.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Oat Bars
adapted from allrecipes.com
1 cup butter (I used 2/3 cup butter)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups quick cooking oats (I used between 2 3/4 and 3 1/4 cups, just enough to keep moist but not too wet or too dry)
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (I used 1 1/4 cups, a mixture of Milk and Semi-Sweet chips)
1/2 cup peanut butter (I used 3/4 cup)

Grease a 9×9 inch square pan. (I lined an 8×8 pan with foil and sprayed with PAM)

Melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar and vanilla. Mix in the oats. Cook over low heat 2 to 3 minutes, or until ingredients are well blended.
Press half of mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. (I pressed 2/3 mixture in bottom of pan)
Reserve the remainder for topping.

Meanwhile, melt chocolate chips and peanut butter in a small heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently until smooth. Pour the chocolate mixture over the crust in the pan, and spread evenly with a knife or the back of a spoon.

Crumble the remaining oat mixture over the chocolate layer, pressing in gently.
Cover, and refrigerate 2 to 3 hours or overnight. Bring to room temperature before cutting into bars.