Sunday, March 13, 2011

Peanut Butter + Chocolate = Happy Family & Friends

A little over a month ago I had a thought. I mean...I have thoughts a lot...but this thought was about cake. Cake that involved peanut butter and chocolate. These two things. like Romeo and Juliet, were made for each other.

The cake was first attempted for our Super Bowl party. I used a recipe for the icing out of Food Network magazine. It was good, but not quite the balance of the two flavors that I wanted. So I thought about how to improve the recipe, and waiting until this weekend (my sis-in-law's b-day) to make it again.

I finally decided on chocolate cake with a mixture of peanut butter and chocolate icing. It wasn't until I tasted the two types of icing that I decided how I would divide it. In the end, the cake was fantastic! And I'm finally ready to share with the blogosphere!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake
Adapted from several sources

Cake Ingredients: (From my Hershey's cookbook. Or you can just use a box mix!)
2 cups sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup Cocoa
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup boiling water
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions: Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour three 8-inch round baking pans.

Mix sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl or mixer. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Divide batter into prepared pans evenly.

Bake 25-30 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely.

Place bottom layer on a cake plate. Cover top with peanut butter icing (recipe follows). Place second layer on top and cover with peanut butter icing. Finally place third layer on top of second and spread a very think layer of peanut butter icing on top.

Cover entire cake with chocolate icing (recipe as follows). If desired, pipe extra peanut butter icing on cake.

Serve with vanilla ice cream!

Peanut Butter Icing

1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter (I used reduced fat.)
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature (Or salted butter and leave out kosher salt)
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/3 cup heavy cream

Directions: Mix confectioners' sugar, peanut butter, butter, vanilla, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium-low speed until creamy, scraping down the bowl with a rubber spatula as you work. Add the cream and beat on high speed until the mixture is light and smooth. Adjust consistency to icing by adding more confectioners' sugar or more heavy cream.

Chocolate Icing (As seen before)

2 3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
6 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons evaporated milk

Sift the powdered sugar and cocoa in a medium bowl. With a stand or hand mixer, cream butter until smooth. Gradually add in the sugar mixture, alternating with a tablespoon of evaporated milk at a time. Once all ingredients are combined, beat until light and fluffy.

Take a spatula, and test the stiffness of the icing by seeing if a peak forms when you flop it over. (This is very technical.) If too thick, add a tiny bit of more milk. If not thick enough, add more powdered sugar. Most likely it will not be thick enough!


Lisa said...

Mmm, this cake sounds totally luscious. I just love PB chocolate combos. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog and I'd like to invite you to stop by and link your cake up.

-deva said...

I hope the weekend birthday festivities were great. Thanks for posting the recipe. I can't wait to try it. I have to wait until after Easter, but after that....bring on the sugar coma.