Friday, March 23, 2012

Peanut Butter Candy Bar Cookie Pie

I was given a challenge. 

Our friend, Neil, approached me and asked, "What can you make with a ½ pound Reese's Peanut Butter Cup?" Um, a world record by devouring it in 10.6 seconds perhaps? Just to clarify, he actually spoke in fractions. Haha....I kid.

He received a half pound Reese's Peanut Butter Cup - yes, that's right, I said a HALF POUND, from a friend of his. Reese's are my most favorite candy bar in the world, so resistance to open and eat it on its own proved to be a very big challenge in itself. For me.

I thought it over and decided to sleep on it, hoping the recipe fairy would visit me that night and leave something under my pillow. Turns out, I didn't need to wait that long. As I was almost in my REM sleep mode, several ideas popped into my head that could work. I quickly jotted them on a piece of paper.

Of course, I couldn't sleep after that. All I could think about was that damn peanut butter cup. 

This morning, I got right down to it. I decided to draw inspirations from 2 other of my most favorite treats - Pretzel M&Ms and chocolate chip cookies. 

I came up with this. It's decadent, rich, and full of chocolate.

It also has diabetes written ALL over it.


2 cups pretzels, crushed
1 cup butter, melted

Chocolate Chip Cookies - Just an FYI...this is the best recipe to use if you ever want or need to make one massive cookie. This is why I chose to use it in this post. I knew it will bake perfectly in a large quantity.

cups all-purpose flour 
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 egg
2 cups chocolate chips

1 box brownie mix, plus ingredients to make brownies - I decided to use a box for this recipe as the outcome is a bit more predictable than if I were to go homemade.

Center and Topping:
20 snack size Reese's Peanut Butter Cups or 1 half pound and about 6 snack size peanut butter cups

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Prepare a 9-inch springform pan by lightly spraying with a non-stick cooking spray.

In a food processor, chop pretzels until small bits are left. Don't pulverize to dust. You want some crunch. In a bowl, add melted butter to pretzels and line bottom of springform pan. Bake for 5 minutes; set aside to cool.

For cookies:
In bowl, mix flour, soda, and salt together; set aside. In another bowl, beat butter, sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth. Add flour mixture into butter mixture and beat until incorporated. Add chocolate chips. Mix until combined.

Layer on top of pretzels. What I did to ensure I wouldn't upset the pretzel base too much is took a chunk of dough, smooshed it in my hand, then carefully layed in pan and evened out the seams.

Once cookie dough is in place, top with 12-14 snack size peanut butter cups. If you have a ½ pound peanut butter cup, place right in the middle of pan. You can also surround the big cup with several little ones if you'd like.

Prepare brownies according to box. Once mixed, pour over top, ensuring it is completely covered.

Chop about 6 peanut butter cups and sprinkle on top of brownie mixture.

Place in oven and bake for 40-45 minutes.

Cool COMPLETELY. If you cut too soon (like I did), you'll end up with chocolate spewing out of the cake from the peanut butter cups. It needs time to rest, settle, and cool.

Top with ice cream for a true cardiac arrest.

Happy Baking!