PS: Remember this idea when you have a Halloween bag FULL of those fun-sized candy bars and don't want your kids overdosing on candy!
Ready for the oven!Cooling and looking good so far! Tada! I used peanuts from a bag of trail mix so they'd be unsalted. :D Doesn't that look so yummy!?
MY NOTES: I don't recommend the frosting recipe. It's hard to work with, very sweet, and does not have a pronounced chocolate flavor.
Peanut Butter Cupcakes (from Cupcakes! by Elinor Klivans)
Makes 12-14 (Recipe says 12, I got 14)
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons (¾ stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup milk (any fat content)
Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 12 muffin tin cups with paper cupcake liners.
Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter, peanut butter, and brown sugar until smoothly blended and lightened in color, about 1 minute. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl as needed during mixing. Mix in the egg. Add the vanilla and beat for 1 minute, or until the batter is smooth. On low speed, add the flour mixture in 3 additions and the milk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and mixing just until the flour is incorporated and the batter looks smooth.
Fill each paper liner with a generous ¼ cup of batter, to about 1/3 inch below the top of the liner. (At this point, I placed ½ of a bite sized Mr. Goodbar in the center of each cupcake and lightly pressed it down.) Bake just until the tops feel firm and are lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 22 minutes (If you put chocolate on yours, insert the toothpick from the side diagonally toward the center). There may be a few small cracks on top. Cool the cupcakes for 10 minutes in the pan on a wire rack.
Carefully place the wire rack on top of the cupcakes in their pan. Protecting your hands with pot holders and holding the pan and rack together, invert them to release the cupcakes onto the wire rack. Turn the cupcakes top side up to cool completely.
Milk Chocolate Frosting (from Cupcakes Galore by Gail Wagman)
3 oz. milk chocolate (I ended up using about 10 oz altogether!)
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 2/3 cups confectioners' sugar (I added another 3/4 cup to make it spreadable)
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat chocolate and butter in a double boiler or microwave until just melted. Remove from heat and cool.
Using a whisk or wooden spoon, beat sugar, salt, cream, and vanilla until smooth. Add cooled chocolate mixture and beat until blended. (If frosting is too soft, put it in the fridge for 10-20 minutes to harden it a bit. Beat it again until it becomes spreadable.)
Overall rating on a scale of 1-5