I’ve been holding onto this peanut butter fudge recipe for a while, waiting for the perfect occasion to share it with you. Well to be quite honest, I had guarded this recipe tightly for almost 20 years. When I was working on my cookbook, Hungry Halloween featuring Movie Monster Munchies, Bewitched Buffet, and Dead Man’s Diner, I wanted to make a witch hat filled with peanut butter fudge and covered in chocolate ganache, and knew this was the perfect recipe, so I had to let go of my secret. As of yet, I haven’t shared it here with you, but felt it was time to indulge all of my fabulous readers with this delectable sweet.
Many of you are familiar with a traditional Ohio candy, called a buckeye, made with peanut butter, powdered sugar, and butter. I used a variation of this recipe to make my Pink Fuzzy Slipper Cookies, and really like it. Well, this is not that recipe. Years ago when I opened my candy shop in Ohio, I wanted to differentiate my buckeyes from those made by home cooks. Everyone in Ohio makes these candies, well almost everyone (am I right Ohioans?), so I wanted to sell something no one else made, and, of course, wanted it to taste even better.
After a lot of experimenting, I came up with what I consider to be the ultimate peanut butter filling; it’s so rich and creamy, full of peanut butter flavor, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. To create such a luscious filling, you need to avoid powdered sugar and butter all together and instead use white confectionery coating (or white chips) and peanut butter chips. Melted and mixed with peanut butter and a pinch of salt, to bring out the peanutty flavor, it can be used for so many different recipes. If left to sit at room temperature overnight, it can be scooped and rolled into balls to make buckeyes. But, even better, if poured into a plastic candy mold, a silicone mold, or a cookie cutter, it can be frozen solid, then popped out of the mold. After a short time, it thaws and becomes the consistency of soft fudge. I’ve created tarts, cakes, mousse, frosting, and even pies using this basic recipe. I’m sure I’ll share some of those ideas in the future, but for now here is the recipe to make sweet hearts for Valentine’s Day.
Fudgy Peanut Butter and Chocolate Valentine’s Day Hearts
Store your peanut butter hearts in an airtight container at room temperature for about a month You can also keep them frozen for up to 6 months. If you add chocolate ganache to your hearts, you need to consume them within two weeks. Serve at room temperature.