Category Archives: Peanut butter

Peanut Butter Surprise Cupcake Timeline

Baking cupcakes with a three-year old girl goes a little something like this…

16:13 – Arrive at my friend Jean’s house to bake cupcakes with her and her 3-year-old daughter (Hannah).

16:14 – Hannah and I have never met, she hides behind Jean’s legs as we’re introduced.

16:17 – Hannah shows me her closet full of clothes and her 1,2,4,5,6,7,8 shoes. (4 pairs, but 8 shoes).

16:18 – I think Hannah and I are friends now.

16:20 – Peanut Butter Cupcake Surprise preparation time.

16:21 – I show Hannah the chocolate rosebuds, chocolate with sprinkles, chocolate covered bananas and Easter eggs that will be used for the “surprise” centre.

16:21 – Hannah says “the Easter bunny will bring me chocolates soon”. I reply “Well, the Easter bunny gave these to me as an early present”.

16:21 – Hannah smiles.

16:22 – Around this time, I wish I had researched the whole legality of showing pictures of kids on a blog. I have a feeling Hannah is going to be pretty cute during this baking adventure. I’m sure it would have been fine since Jean was there, but to be safe, I choose not to take any pictures of Hannah…next time.

16:22 – I’m pretty sure I can take a picture of Montana the dog. He’s thinking “Please buddy, drop a cupcake later for me”.

16:23 – Jean pours the sugar in the measuring cup as I measure out the butter.

16:24 – Hannah grabs the sugar from the counter and moves it to the bowl. Sugar ends up on the floor.

16:25 – I was right, Hannah is very cute.

16:26 – Hannah likes to crack eggs. Eggs and shell(s) go into bowl.

16:27 – Jean spends 5 minutes pulling shells from the bowl. Hannah is unaware of this activity.

16:32 – Batter is being mixed and it’s peanut butter heaven.

16:35 – Hannah gets to lick the whisk and says it’s “yummy”. We can continue.

16:38 – Hannah has a very important job. Place the chocolate right in the middle of the batter. After her first one, I say, “that’s perfect”. Hannah than places each chocolate into the middle of the batter and says “that’s perfect”.

16:40 – Note to self – Kids like to copycat, be careful of what I say.

16:45 – First batch of cupcakes go into the oven. Jean wants to play with her new convection oven. We cut the baking time from 18-20 minutes to 10 minutes.

16:55 – Cupcakes are out and they smell terrific.

16:57 – Cupcakes start to implode and crash inwards.

16:58 – Note to self – Turn off convection oven for the second batch.

17:04 – Hannah begins setting her small table for tea with seven glasses of water, even though there are three of us.

17:18 – Second batch of cupcakes come out looking perfect.

17:30 – All the cupcakes have cooled and get a slight dusting of powdered sugar.

17:31 – Hannah takes a bite and proclaims “It’s good and my surprise in the middle was a sprinkle”.

17:32 – Although they do not look as appealing, both Jean and I decide that the imploded/convection style cupcake is amazing. The outside is perfectly done, but the middle has a warm gooey batter-like consistency. For someone who likes batter and cupcakes, this is the best of both worlds.

17:36 – Hannah lays pillows across the living room floor and takes a nap.

18:00 – I am introduced to In the Night Garden and Igglepiggle. Igglepiggle and his friends chase a bike going down a hill for 20 minutes.

19:00 – I say good-bye to Jean and Hannah. I get a hug from Hannah.

19:01 – Today was a good day.

Peanut Butter Surprise Cupcakes – (Recipe from Southern Living – 1,001 Ways to Cook Southern)

Makes 24 cupcakes

  • 3/4 cup of butter, softened
  • 2 cups of granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup of creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 24 milk chocolate kisses (or in my case, whatever you think might entertain a three-year old)
  • Confectioners sugar
  1. Preheat over to 375F. Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add granulated sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each addition. Add peanut butter, beating until smooth.
  2. Combine flour, baking soda and salt; add to peanut butter mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low-speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in vanilla extract.
  3. Spoon 2 tablespoons of batter into each of the 24 paper baking cups in muffin pans. Place 1 chocolate on its side in centre of batter in each cup. Top evenly with remaining batter (about 2 tablespoons in each cup) covering each chocolate.
  4. Bake at 375F for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool in pans on wire racks for 5 minutes. Remove from pans and cool on wire racks. Dust with confectioners sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Filed under chocolate, Cupcakes, Peanut butter, Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Peanut Butter Crinkles & A Story…

As you all know, I’ve had a great time recently cooking from my grandmother’s recipe book. So imagine my excitement when I got a package in the mail from Kimmie over at Full Circle with a wonderful hand-written note (rare in itself these days) AND a copy of her great grandmother’s recipe book full of Southern Louisiana classics. After seeing all the fun I’d had of late making my grandmother’s meatloaf and cherry snowballs, Kimmie assumed (correctly) that I would love to catch a glimpse of her family’s history as told through food.

As soon as I saw Southern Louisiana, I knew I’d be encountering a lot of dishes that involved sugar and more sugar with a side of Southern hospitality and I was right. In her note to me, Kimmie wrote “There is nothing fancy or cutting edge about these recipes and most are sure to you give you a heart attack but they were made with soul and love throughout many generations in the South.” Now I don’t know about you, but that’s simply deep-fried music to my ears.

I knew I had to start by baking great grandmother Verda’s Peanut Butter Crinkles. I’m not sure why I had to begin with this recipe, maybe because it called for white sugar and brown sugar or maybe it was the jam in the middle or maybe I could just sense this was a perfect cookie for eating amongst friends.

These Peanut Butter Crinkles are absolutely wonderful. They are soft and crumbly with the slightest crunch that is neutralized by the jam in the middle. Accompanied with a cup of tea, they are perfect for an afternoon of catching up with old friends or sharing stories with new friends.

Peanut Butter Crinkles (From the Kitchen of Verda Baker)

My comments are in italics

  • 1 cup of margarine (I asked Kimmie why margarine was used rather than butter. Margarine was more commonly used because it was  less expensive)
  • 1 cup of peanut butter (I used chunky peanut butter. I figured it would give it some additional texture)
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • sugar
  • nuts, chocolate kisses (I used walnuts and chocolate chips)
  • jam or jelly (I used mainly strawberry jam, but I did experiment with fig jam and lemon jelly and all three complimented the peanut butter exceptionally well)
  1. In bowl with mixer at medium speed, beat first 6 ingredients until fluffy.
  2. At low speed, beat in next 3 ingredients.
  3. Shape into 1″ balls; roll in sugar. (Makes approximately 48 cookies)
  4. Place 2″ apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
  5. Bake in 350F oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until browned. (For me at least, 12 minutes was the perfect amount of time in the oven)
  6. Immediately press nuts or candies into cookies or press with thumb and fill with jam. (I put nuts in half of them and chocolate chips in the other half. As I mentioned earlier, I used mainly strawberry jam, but I’m convinced any jam would work wonders with these cookies, so experiment!)
  7. Cool.

Kimmie, thanks again for sharing your family’s treasure with me. Have a seat and let’s have a Peanut Butter Crinkle or three.

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Filed under Friends, Louisiana, Peanut butter, Peanut Butter Crinkles

Please don’t judge me, but it’s breakfast like The King

When you have a few days off between working the Olympics and the Paralympics, you have time to sleep in, buy some groceries and cook breakfast at home rather than stopping at Tim Horton’s or Starbucks in your blue smurf uniform. I’m not sure why, maybe because I had some time and wanted to treat myself but I had this desire for an Elvis Presley type breakfast including eggs, meat, bananas and peanut butter. So with that said, I picked up the necessary components and went all out and even bought some pancetta.

Elvis Presley breakfast

Now please don’t judge me…for starters, I cut up the pancetta into strips and tossed them into the fry pan with a little bit of olive oil and maple syrup. Once they got nice and crispy, I removed them and placed them onto a paper towel to absorb some of the grease. With the smell of pancetta goodness filling the kitchen, I decided to do my eggs sunny-side up in my pancetta-greased pan. Even though the grease in the pan made the outer edges of the eggs dark, it just added more flavor to the eggs.

To finish it off, peanut butter and bananas were tossed on to the toast and since I was going all out, I drizzled some maple syrup over the entire plate…if you’re gonna do it, you might as well do it properly, right?

Pancetta goodness

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Filed under bananas, breakfast, eggs, Elvis Presley, maple syrup, Olympics, Pancetta, Paralympics, Peanut butter