Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Dense Chocolate & Creamy Peanut Butter; What A Way to Celebrate Peanut Butter Day!

This is going to be a "drive by" post because I'm in the midst of preparing a rather unusual post (for me anyway:) and I'm still working on it. I'll give you a little hint by telling you it has something to do with wishing my Chinese visitors a Happy New Year!!!

In the meantime, rather than have this delicious cake go stale, I thought I would drop off just one sliver. Since my photography skills have not improved in the new year, I'm also including "their" pro image:) I adapted this recipe for Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting from The Land of Lakes Recipe Collection booklet published in 2005.

Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting
1-2/3 cups sugar (I used 1 cup regular sugar; 2/3 cup vanilla sugar:)
3/4 cup butter, softened
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa (I erred and used Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa; it's all we had:)
1-1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/3 cups milk
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 to 4 tablespoons milk (I used cream)
1. Heat oven 350°. Grease and lightly flour 2 (8 or 9 inch) square or round pans.
2. Combine sugar and 3/4 cup butter in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often until creamy. Add eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla; continue beating until well mixed. Add flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt to butter mixture alternately with 1-1/3 cups milk, beating just until well blended.
3. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans. Bake 30-40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pans. Cool completely.
4. Meanwhile place peanut butter and 1/2 cup butter in small bowl. Beat at low speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy. Add powdered sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla (I only used one:) and enough milk for desired frosting consistency.
5. To assemble cake, place 1 layer onto serving plate. Spread 1 cup frosting over top; top with second layer. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake.
Note: If you prefer, Land O Lakes Soft Baking Butter with Canola Oil can be used right from the refrigerator.

The cake was absolutely delicious. I was a bit worried it may be too peanut buttery so I used only 1/2 cup peanut butter. (It was also all I had:) Marion loved it!!! It came out sort of fudgy like a brownie but thicker and gooeier (is that a word?) Marion and I both decided it probably would have been better to make one layer and freeze the other but too late now!!!

I hope to see you all in a few days with the "mysterious" post. Don't forget National Peanut Brittle Day on January 26th. Here's a recipe from The Peanut Butter Cookbook by Judi & Tony Meisel. (©1993)