Friday, January 29, 2016

Peanut Butter Balls

I know that in some parts of the US, these are called Buckeyes and made around the Christmas season.  I've never made them before, but wanted to after sampling one around Christmas time.  We had too many sweets at Christmas, so we never ended up making them then.  About two weeks ago, though, my daughter begged and begged to do these together, so I gave in.  I used Joy the Baker's Recipe.  I like her method of only dipping half the ball; it's easier and less messy that way.  These are SUPER sweet. Addicting, though.  Good for every once in a while.  (BTW I loved using coconut oil while melting the chocolate.  It made everything so smooth, even though I used chocolate chips (semi-sweet mini.)
Peanut Butter Balls
adapted from Joy the Baker

1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened to room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
pinch of salt
6 cups powdered sugar
12 ounces semi-sweet mini chocolate chips (one bag of mini's)
1 tablespoon coconut oil

1.  In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine peanut butter, butter, vanilla, salt, and half of the powdered sugar.  Blend on low speed until the mixture begins to come together. Stop the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the remaining powdered sugar. Mix until thoroughly combined. The mixture will be very thick, but not dry. The powdered sugar should incorporate easily.

2.  Remove the bowl from the stand and use a small cookie scoop (about one tablespoon; smaller than a standard cookie scoop) to scoop dough and roll peanut butter balls between your hands to make a tight, round ball. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.

3.  In a heatproof bowl (or double boiler) combine chocolate chips and coconut oil. Place the bowl over a small pot of simmering water and let sit until chocolate begins to melt. Stir until the chocolate is completely melted and reduce heat so the water is just at a low simmer.

4.  Remove the balls from the refrigerator and using your fingers, dip half of each ball into the melted chocolate, and return to the parchment lined sheet. Repeat until all balls are dipped and place in the refrigerator to chill and harden the chocolate.

5.  Keep peanut butter balls covered and stored in the refrigerator.  They last up to 2 weeks if covered well and cool.

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