Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Reese's Peanut Butter Cake Tutorial

My favorite candy is Reese's Peanut Butter cups.  Not the new "mini's" and not the full size candy bar.  I like the little guys.  The bite size ones that are individually wrapped.

Wanna know why?  If I eat the bite size, it doesn't count so I can eat as many as I want.

The full size candy bars?  I never touch them.  Way too many calories.

When I realized that I have never made a Reese's Peanut Butter cake,
I was shocked.  I still can't believe it.

All these years of baking, in addition to my love for peanut butter cups, and not a one.  No.  Nadda.

It is maddening. I know.

Maybe, just maybe, I made up for lost time when I finally made this one.  It got out of control.

Just a bit.

I made a chocolate cake and then I set out to make Reese's peanut butter cup filling.   

One of my favorite chocolate cakes is from the Confetti Cakes book. If you want to use this one, you can find it here. This is more of a sturdy cake and would be strong enough for loads of peanut butter buttercream!

My most favorite chocolate cake of all times is the one on the back of the Hershey's Cocoa container. It is a very soft and light cake so I rarely use it under heavy buttercream. If you don't have a can of cocoa in your cabinet, get the recipe here. I will say, this is probably the best chocolate cake recipe out there.

Reese's peanut butter cups doesn't have peanut butter buttercream inside. It is more like peanut butter candy. More like a soft candy dough.  

I measured out two cups and put it in a foil lined cake pan and squished it down flat.  I took another cake pan and pressed it on top so it would be nice and level.  Then I did the same thing again for the next layer.

I chilled the filling layers for a while so that when I took them out of the cake pans they would retain their shape.  Freezing them for a while would work also.  I wanted it really thick.

I carefully removed the filling from the pan and placed it on top of the first "level" layer of cake.

Repeat.  Repeat.  

See all that overhanging stuff?  I carefully trimmed that away and then trimmed up the sides of the cake so the sides would be smooth and level too.

I used a total of nine full sized Reese's cups for the top.  I cut each one in half with a very sharp knife to get clean cuts.

I had one left over from the pack but I didn't eat it.  Calories, you know.

I covered the cake with dark chocolate buttercream.

Then I covered it again with milk chocolate buttercream.

I added some additional milk to the left-over peanut butter candy filling to thin it a bit so that I could pipe it.  I piped some rosettes and shells around the borders.

The cake was screaming out for "dark chocolate ganache drippies."  I used a piping bag for the drippies.  Don't even think you can just pour ganache on a cake and get perfect drippies.  

Does not happen in my world.  I normally end up with a big glob of ganache that resembles some sort of sci-fi alien monster.  

This time I was clever.  I piped the drippies.

See those peanut butter balls on top?  After I trimmed the excess filling, I simply rolled them into balls and placed three of them on top.

I still had almost a cup of the filling left.  Peanut butter filling can never go to waste.  

I rolled them in one inch balls, chilled them and dipped them. If you want a really white coating, dip them twice.

I am not so good at "dipping."  Dipping is right up there with "drippies." 

The peanut butter balls may be my new favorite.

Second only to Reese's cups. Of course. No candy will ever come between me and my Reese's cups.

Never, ever, ever.

About that filling?  Here is how I made it...

Each time I make peanut butter buttercream, I have used a different recipe.  All of them have been "the best one."

There is no such thing as bad peanut butter buttercream.

This was another new recipe I tired.  I modified a recipe from for the filling.  The recipe has rave reviews just as it is written.  But I tweaked it because I wanted a stiffer filling.

Normally, I use "room temperture" butter but this recipe uses melted butter.

What the heck, I thought I would give it a go.

2 C creamy peanut butter
1/2 C butter, melted and cooled
5-6 C powdered sugar - or more for the candy "dough" consistency.
3-4 TLBS of milk or heavy cream.  You made need a little more or less.

Place the butter and peanut butter into the mixing bowl and mix until combined.
Gradually mix in the sugar.
Mix in the milk gradually until all the sugar is incorporated and the dough is the desired consistency.
It will be a little crumbly but will hold together if formed into a ball.

If you want to make spreadable buttercream, add additional milk and beat on medium/high for an additional 2-3 minutes or until it is nice and fluffy.

You really can't mess up buttercream.  If it is too thick, simply add a little more milk.  If it is too thin, add more sugar.

This cake will be a hit at any party.

It will be an even bigger hit if you make it and eat it yourself.

High "YUM-YUM-YUM" factor on this one.

There is just "something" about a Reese's Peanut Butter Cake.

I am smiling today.  Are you?


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