Are you sitting down? I suppose you probably are. That's good. Because, after almost two YEARS to the day, I'm getting back to a cooking post. I know. Seriously. Just take a deep breath. It'll be OK. I survived writing it, so you can survive reading to too. Hee hee.
So, here you go folks - an actual COOKING post. From little ol' me. And sister, it's a good recipe! I mean, you waited two years for it, so it better be good right? Because I know you've all been sitting around thinking to yourself, "I wonder when that Amy is going to do another cooking post." Well, this is for YOU baby. All for you!
Also, before I go any further, I'd like to go on notice as saying I'm ready to come photograph YOU in YOUR kitchen any ol' time, too. Holy canoli, I'm back at it, and want to photograph you doing your favorite recipe. So, hit me up for that. If you don't I'll just start bugging you about it. So, go ahead, beat me to it.
I found this recipe via Pinterest. Have you gotten addicted to this site yet? If you haven't you need to check it out. They have an invitation process. Blah blah blah. Put your email address in there, and a few days down the road they will let you in. Because the want you in, silly. It's all an act. A ploy. You're gonna get in. Then, sister, try not to get totally addicted. It's the greatest worm hole you'll ever fall victim to. Amazing. Here I am on Pinterest if you care to see. And, here is the recipe before we all die of old age.
This recipe was found on this blog, via Pinterest. Looks like the Girl Who Ate Everything got the recipe off her pal Greta. Isn't the Internet a wonderful place? OK, so there's your provenance as I know it. Here's the recipe:
As you will see the recipe calls them Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars. Fair enough. I think they could also be called Peanut Butter Dump Cake with a Chocolate Fudge Filling. Perhaps that doesn't roll off the tongue quite as easily. Perhaps they used to call it that but Aunt Ninny just didn't have that many letters in her vocabulary. Whatever the reason, no matter what you call it - it really - REALLY - is peanut butter dump cake with a fudge middle. And that, my friend, is why you'll want to eat the whole pan.
The oh-so-crappy but nonetheless obligatory "ingredients" photo.
Preheat your oven to 325. Spray your pan.
And melt yourself a stick of butter. Amen.
Combine that butter with some yellow cake mix, two eggs, and a cup of Jif.
Or another creamy peanut butter of your choice. We're all about choices, here people.
This was the consistency after mixing.
Looks like cookie dough, no? But, check out those ingredients - sound familiar? Sort of like Pumpkin Dump Cake sans pumpkin, add peanut butter. Uh-huh! You're starting to see the genius within aren't ya.
Don't answer that.
I should say I thought if you didn't melt the butter, God help you, the mixture would be crumblier. I think that would also work. I might try it that way next time.
Set aside 1 1/2 cups for the topping.
Spread the rest into your already prepared 9x13 pan.
I use PAM for baking. If you don't like PAM for baking for religious reasons or because your third cousin's best friend's college roommate's cat once died from ingesting a whole can in one sitting, then do something else. I don't care. It's all about choices, and sister, any choice that means less work for me will be my choice. It's the American way.
Next, it's time to make the yummy, chocolate-y middle. Not unlike my own middle these days, it's ooey-gooey. But in a good way, so maybe not so much like my middle. Ahem. This part uses chocolate and sweetened condensed milk with a little vanilla. Ladies and gentlemen, may I now see a show of hands - who makes fudge with eerily similar ingredients? Uh-huh....one second while I tabulate - OK, you have proved my point. The center is basically a layer of tasty fudge. Hence, the longer, more accurate but less popular name. Gaining popularity by the word.
You know you love it.
It's November, baby.
This stuff is flying off the shelves.
Put the semi-sweet chips, sweetened condensed milk and remaining butter on the stove to melt.
And, if you're like my house, check on the toddler resting at your feet.
Clutching your water bottle. Don't ask.
You might have to taste-test this portion of the recipe.
Like 47,000 times.
When smooth, add vanilla.
For this recipe and in life in general.
You could stop here and just eat this.
If you persevere, spread the chocolate mixture over the peanut butter mixture already in the pan.
Then use that part you set aside...
...to crumble on a topping.
Come crumbling down the pan...
...until it's all covered with more, God help me, peanut butter mixture.
Check on the toddler, still distracted with Mario Batali measuring bowls.
Works every time.
Bake for 20-25 minutes in a dirty oven.
Cool completely before cutting into bars.
They are a bit gooey, so the cooling part, while entirely cruel and unusual punishment, is really necessary. Make ahead so you have time for the cooling. Which for me took several agonizing hours.
Eventually they DID cool off.
And yes, they were as good as you imagine them to be.
Get thee some ingredients and bake them.
Delicious. Will. Make. Again.
So there you go. An entire post about something entirely Ate Up in an old fashioned kind of way. I loved making the bars, taking the photos and writing it up for you. Maybe I'll do it again. But keep your seat.
See you soon.