Saturday, December 10, 2011

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars
Source: Maida Heatter's Brand-New Book of Great Cookies (Random House, 1995 ed.), pg. 87.

This is the type of thing that I can't keep my hands off of - simple to make and sooooo good. I actually used raw peanuts in this recipe because that was what I had on hand. I did increase the salt to 1/4 tsp to compensate. They still turned out great. I used apricot preserves and smooth peanut butter. I'm not really sure what the jam is meant for. 

4 ounces (1 cup) salted peanuts
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup sifted unbleached flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 ounces (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon any jam, jelly or marmalade
1/2 cup smooth or chunky peanut butter
3/4 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
12 ounces (2 cups) milk chocolate morsels

Adjust a rack to the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Line a 9-by-13-by-2-inch pan as follows: Place the pan upside down. Center a
17-inch length of aluminum foil, shiny side down, oven the pan. With your hands, press down on the sides and corners of the pan to shape the foil to fit. Remove the foil. Run tap water into the pan, pour out all but 1 or 2 tablespoons (the wet pan helps hold the foil in place), and place the shaped foil in the pan. To butter the pan, place a piece of butter in the pan. place the pan in the oven to melt the butter, and then spread it all over with a piece of crumpled plastic wrap. Set aside.

Place the peanuts and granulated sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal chopping blade. Pulse the machine several times to chop the peanuts a bit. Set aside.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.


In the large bowl of an electric mixer beat the butter, vanilla, and jam, jelly or marmalade to mix. Add the peanut butter and beat to mix. Then beat in the brown sugar. Add the eggs and beat until smooth. On low speed beat in the sifted dry ingredients.

Remove the bowl from the mixer and stir in the chopped peanuts and granulated sugar. Stir in the chocolate morsels. Turn the mixture into the prepared pan. Smooth the top. Bake for about 35 minutes, reversing the pan front to back once during baking, until a toothpick gently inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let stand until cool.

Cover with a cookie sheet or a cutting board, turn upside down, remove the pan and foil, cover with another cookie sheet or cutting board and turn upside down again, leaving the cake right side up. Let stand for a few hours or chill briefly until firm enough to cut. With a long, sharp knife cut the cake into quarters. Cut each quarter in half, then cut each piece into 3 or 4 bars. If you wish, wrap each piece in clear cellophane or wax paper, or place in an airtight box with wax paper between the layers. Makes 32 bars.


Simply Tia said...

I am ALL over these! What's not to love about peanut butter and chocolate? Yum!

Elizabeth said...

Your instinct was right on target with your substitution of apricot jam for the marmalade-- it's really just a moisturizer for the bars, rather than a perceptible ingredient. I believe they use preserves this way in some German and Eastern European baking...