In my quest for quick recipes this week I ran across an older post from Peabody where she baked peanut butter chocolate bars that she swore were quick, easy and indulgent. She also mentioned she got the recipe from Death By Chocolate Cookies by Marcel Desaulniers which really piqued my interest since I have owned that book for years (two of my favorite blondie recipes are from that book -- here and here) and yet I have never made the recipe, and despite flipping through that books dozens of time over the years, I had no memory of the recipe. (okay, the memory part -- not so surprising, I've know 3 year olds with better memories than mine...)
Looking for something quick and easy I opened up my copy of the book and sure enough there was the recipe. It only has a 6 ingredients and was just as quick and easy as Peabody promised. Sweet.
The most time consuming part was chopping the chocolate. I tried to do it quickly which left large chunks of chocolate, but I didn't think anyone would complain. The recipe also calls for unsalted peanuts that you toast in the oven. Since that fell into the "too time consuming" category, and I didn't have unsalted peanuts anyway, I used honey roasted peanuts instead -- something that I tend to keep on hand at all times after buying the Dorie Greenspan Baking book.
Since I did have the time constraints for making these, I let them cool in the pan for an hour and then covered the pan and put it in the fridge overnight. I'm pretty sure they would have been ooey, gooey good without the overnight stay in the fridge, but the trip to the fridge helped them set up and made them much easier to cut and handle. More chunks held together with a little batter than blondies with chips and nuts -- these are good -- with very little interfering with the co-mingled flavors of chocolate and peanuts. If chocolate covered peanuts are your thing -- then these will be right up your alley.
2 cups unsalted peanuts (or 2 cups honey roasted)
2 cups creamy peanut butter
2 cups tightly packed brown sugar(light)
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 pound semisweet chocolate, chopped into 1/4 inch pieces
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
If using unsalted peanuts, toast them on a baking sheet in the preheated oven until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Cool the nuts to room temperature before chopping by hand. If you use honey roasted, skip that part and just add them when called for.
Use a stiff whisk to blend together the peanut butter and brown sugar(I used my mixer) in a bowl. Add the eggs and vanilla extract and whisk until thoroughly blended. Add the peanuts and the chopped semisweet chocolate, mix well. Transfer mixture to a 9X13X2 inch pan. Use your fingertips to press the mixture onto the bottom of the pan and into the corner and sides, creating an even layer. Place the pan on the center tack of the preheated oven and bake for 22 minutes until set in the center. Remove from oven and cool at room temperature for 1 hour before cutting.