Peanut Butter & Chocolate Brownies

Peanut Butter Brownies 4

Much like marmite I find peanut butter is very much a “you either love it or you hate it” kind of spread. Of the lovers, some like it crunchy, others prefer it smooth, but whatever the texture preference, all will be glad to hear that today is National Peanut Butter Lovers Day.

In celebration, many may simply run to the toaster to make warm peanut butter on toast, but with baking what I’m known for, it was only right that I used peanut butter in some form of kitchen creation.

I’m no stranger to baking with peanut butter as you will see from some of my previous posts, but there is one thing missing and that’s the chocolate brownie. As soon as I got the idea in my head it wasn’t long before the warm chocolatey, peanut buttery slab of heaven was ready to be tasted. Needless to say it didn’t last the hour and 30 minutes it took to make: I never knew I was friends so many peanut butter lovers. It seems I chose well!

Peanut Butter Brownies 2

Peanut Butter Brownies


Makes 16 squares

Preparation time | 30 minutes

Baking time | 1 hour


Brownie batter

115g unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, plus more for pan

160g good-quality dark chocolate chocolate, coarsely chopped

85g all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

150g granulated sugar

3 large free-range eggs

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

 

Peanut filling

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

65g confectioners’ sugar

100g smooth peanut butter

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 180 degrees C and line a greased 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, allowing 2 inches to hang over sides.

To create the batter, put butter and chocolate in a heatproof medium bowl set over a pan of simmering water and stir until melted.

While this cools whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a separate bowl, and set aside.

Then add the sugar and eggs into the cooled chocolate mixture, whisking to combine. (remember to ensure the chocolate is cool so the eggs don’t begin to cook). Stir in the vanilla then add the flour mixture folding until well incorporated.

For the peanut filling, stir together butter, icing sugar, peanut butter and vanilla into a bowl until smooth.

Pour 1/3 of the chocolate batter into the prepared pan spreading evenly into the corners. Place 4-6 spoonfuls about 1 inch apart on top of the batter. Follow this process with the remaining chocolate batter and place the rest of the peanut filling on top.

With a butter knife, gently swirl the filling into batter, starting from the top corner and running the knife lengthways in an ‘S’ shape. Bake for about 45 minutes then let it cool slightly in pan, about 15 minutes. Lift out brownies and let cool completely on a wire rack before cutting into squares.

Raw Date and Peanut Energy Bites

p1090058

The afternoon sugar slump is an evil thing don’t you agree? As a baker I find it so hard to keep my fingers out of the freshly baked cookie jar when a craving hits, but thankfully I have these delicious energy bites to keep me on the straight and narrow.

They are filled with nothing but goodness – walnuts, dates, flaxseed, coconut, rolled oats and peanut butter. The perfect healthy treat and packed full with protein and fibre which means they will give you tons of energy to power through the afternoon.

Perhaps my favourite thing about these though is that they are one indulgent pleasure I can never feel guilty about. All ingredients can be found in the most basic store cupboards too so unless you need to top anything up there is no special shopping required. I have an industrial size peanut butter tub in my cupboard so I’m never caught shy when I need to make these. They are super-duper easy to make and even if you’re in a rush at just 10 minutes there is always time to whip up a quick batch. I make mine on a Sunday night and store them in my fridge. If I’m careful they last all week….just about.

p1090072

p1090051


Makes 24

Prep time: 10 minutes


400g pitted dates

100g walnuts

100g rolled oats

100g desiccated coconut

50g flax seeds (optional)

1tbsp peanut butter

½ tbsp honey

50g pistachios (for decoration)


This is a no-nonsense recipe so throw all ingredients (except the pistachios) into the food processor and blitz until all combined.

Crush or blitz the pistachios separately and pour into a bowl ready for decoration.

Take small amounts and roll into bites about 1 inch in diameter. Pop them into the bowl of pistachios and roll them around until suitable coated. This gives them a nice crunch but the coating is totally optional, so if you can’t be bothered just leave the bites naked.

Sit them on a lined baking sheet and leave in the fridge for 30 minutes to an hour until firm.

Happy snacking!

<a href=”http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/14733763/?claim=t8dfz9ffufe”>Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

Raw Dark Chocolate, Peanut Butter Quinoa Bars

p1100800

Five years ago, Quinoa was a lonely grain, familiar mainly among its Peruvian natives. As it made its way over to Europe, it quickly became noticed as one of the most underrated grains of the century and its pronunciation became somewhat of a conversation piece. Phonetically it went (and still goes) a little something like this “Kin-Owa” “Quin-owa” “Chin-wa”. Eventually we did managed to get the hang of it “Keen-Wa”.

Now a fashionista of the foodie world, Quinoa is the world’s most popular superfood and can be seen adorning menus of all varieties be it Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch or Dinner. Very rarely have I seen it used in baking however, so when I came across Quinoa Bars on one of my many Pinterest raids, I just knew I had to make some of my own.

Choosing what I put with it didn’t take much deliberation and nothing is more indulgent that dark chocolate and peanut butter. I really wanted to find a flavour that would hit that sweet craving right in the whatsits, however as these were made with my current health kick in mind the balance had to be enough to stop me scoffing more minutes later.

Adding that touch of cinnamon really does the trick and I can already tell these will quickly become a weekly must-have for my kitchen. 

p1100779

p1100786

p1100804


Makes 8-10 squares

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Fridge time: 4 hours


100g uncooked quinoa

140g rolled oats

7-8 pitted dates

2tbsp smooth peanut butter

1tbsp Manuka honey

1tsp Coconut oil (I use Lucy Bee)

1 tsp cinnamon

200g 85% Dark Chocolate


Start by cooking your quinoa in 200ml of simmering water. The ratio when cooking quinoa is always 1:2.

When soft and fluffy, pour into a sieve and rinse with cold water, then drain as much of the excess water away as you can.

Blitz the dates in a blender, then pour the cooked quinoa into a large mixing bowl. Add the dates, rolled oats, peanut butter, honey, coconut oil and cinnamon. Mix everything together until fully incorporated then pour into a lined 20×20 baking tin. Pat the mixture down evenly then pop into the fridge for 2 hours.

For the chocolate topping, break the chocolate into a bowl and set it on top of a bowl of boiling water, stirring until completely melted. In a separate bowl melt a tablespoon of peanut butter until it becomes a runny consistency.

Pour the melted chocolate over the top of the quinoa mix ensuring it is evenly spread. Then with a tablespoon, gently pour drops of the runny peanut butter across the chocolate. To create the swirly pattern, take a knife and starting from one corner twist it gently through the melted chocolate and combine with the peanut butter.

Put everything back in the fridge to set for another 2-3 hours (or overnight). When ready it can be gently lifted out of the baking tin and cut into squares.