Thursday, January 3, 2013

Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars

Some flavors, without fail, always go together excellently. There's tons of these famous food pairs out there, ranging the taste-bud scales : coffee and chocolate, cinnamon and sugar, wine and cheese, buffalo-chicken,  lemon-lime, tomato-basil.

One of these delicious pairs is peanut-butter and chocolate. Oh my good!

You may recall this amazing peanut butter pie I made for Thanksgiving. I believe its still my reigning peanut-butter favorite, but I decided to try out the yummy combo again for Christmas. And what's better for Christmas than cookies? Or cookie bars, as the case may be.

I first encountered this recipe here while trolling Pinterest's unending inspiration boards. I will warn you... these bars are incredibly rich. The chocolate layer almost has the consistency and flavor-intensity of dark chocolate fudge. So one tiny cookie is enough for me; but hey, who doesn't like to splurge over the holidays.

1 package yellow cake mix
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup creamy peanut butter (I used PeterPan)
2 eggs
1 (12oz) package chocolate chips
1 (14oz) can sweet condensed milk
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons vanilla

Preheat oven to 325*F
Combine cake mix, melted butter, peanut butter, and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Press this peanut butter mixture into a greased 9x13 pan, reserving 1 1/2 cups of the mixture to use later as the topping.
In a small pot, melt together the chocolate chip, sweet condensed milk, and 2 tablespoons butter. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.
Spread chocolate mixture over the peanut butter layer. Then, crumble the remaining 1 1/2 cup peanut butter mix on top.
Bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool completely before cutting.


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