A Fix For My Craving
As a general rule, I am a peanut butter and chocolate lover, as in the two ingredients together. When I buy a peanut butter cup, dark chocolate being my preference, I love to eat the chocolate edges first, with itty bitty bites of the peanut butter in them. Then I work my way towards the middle, where the ratio gets reversed.
Every so often I find myself in the mood for peanut butter without its partner. Sometimes this craving can be satisfied with a straight spoonful of peanut butter on a spoon, although truth be told, with this method of eating, I find it very hard to resist adding a few chocolate chips to the top of the peanut butter before consuming.
The best solution for me is to bake something that hits the spot. My Peanut Butter Cheesecake works every time. Rather than just a plain graham cracker crust, I add lightly salted peanuts when processing the crackers to make sure that every layer of the cake satisfies the peanut lover in me.
The filling is really straight forward, cream cheese and peanut butter with a few other ingredients to hold the layer in place. Yet, who can stop there? Not I, that’s for sure; I also swirl additional peanut butter into the filling. Top the cooled cheesecake with more peanut butter and I am hard pressed to find something else that is more peanut buttery.
For those of you who simply cannot wrap your minds around eating peanut butter without chocolate, don’t fret; there is a solution to this problem. Add some chocolate chips to the recipe and then do a double topping on the cooled cake. One being a chocolate glaze and one a peanut butter glaze.
Still not sold that you will have enough chocolate? If this is the case, then do a chocolate ganache topping instead of the duo option. Should you find that you absolutely MUST have more of the chocolate than peanut butter, then your best option is to bake the Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake instead of the Peanut Butter Cheesecake.
Who says it is difficult to satisfy everyone’s craving?
|Peanut Butter Cheesecake|| |
- 5.35 ounces graham crackers (10-1/3 crackers)
- ¾ cups lightly salted peanuts
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- Cream cheese filling:
- 4 - 8 ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
- 1¼ cups creamy peanut butter, divided
- 1¼ cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- For the crust:
- Preheat the oven to 325°. Set aside a 10" cake pan.
- Combine the graham crackers, peanuts and sugar in a food processor fitted with a metal blade and process until it is the consistency of powder. Add the melted butter and pulse on/off until well blended. Grease the pan with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer the crust mixture to the pan and pat evenly onto the bottom and up 1” of the side. Set aside.
- For the filling:
- Beat the cream cheese, ¾ cup peanut butter and sugar until smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes, scraping the bowl down as needed. Add the eggs one at a time and mix until smooth. Add the vanilla. Use a rubber spatula to swirl in the remaining ½ cup of peanut butter.
- Pour the filling into the pan and bake at 325° for 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely on a cooling rack. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
- Cover a 12” round cake board with plastic wrap. Place the cheesecake in a larger pan. Fill halfway up the side of the cheesecake pan with very warm water. Let sit for about 20 seconds. Take cheesecake out of the water and dry the pan. Cover with the wrapped 12” round cake board and turn upside down. Tap firmly once or twice against the countertop to loosen the cake from the pan. Remove the cake pan. Place a serving plate over the bottom of the cheesecake and invert. Refrigerate while preparing the topping.
- For the topping:
- Place the peanut butter and cream in a small bowl. Stir until well blended. Spoon into a small plastic freezer bag and cut off one of the bottom corners. Drizzle the topping out over the cake.
- Betsy's tidbits:
- Peanut Butter Cheesecake may also be prepared in a springform pan. Once the cake cools, remove the side of the pan.