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Monday, January 31, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter Torte





From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...My favorite dessert are, for the most part, European and barely sweet. I love those made with lemon, nuts or fruit and if you wrap them in a crisp and crackly crust, I'll follow you anywhere. That being said, there are also a handful of other, less classic, desserts that can cause me to fall from grace. This Chocolate Peanut Butter Torte is one of them, and, when it's in the house, my fall from grace is not a stumble, it's a free fall. I can't resist this torte. I really love the peanut and chocolate combination and when it's used as it is in this recipe, developed by Dorie Greenspan, just a bite has been known to make my socks go up and down. While there are several steps required to make this torte, they are simple and quite easy to do. I don't make it a habit to rewrite recipes of this caliber. Pastry chefs are exacting in their measurements and execution, and I have no problem following them, if the flavors being proffered are to my liking. I did make a substitution here that I want to talk about a bit. It has to do with chocolate crumbs that are used to make refrigerator pies or cheesecakes. Many of the better recipes use chocolate wafer crumbs to line pie plates or spring form pans. If you live in an area where they are available, no harm, no foul. If they are not available, most of you already know you can use Oreo cookies, sans filling, as a replacement. The problem is that there is rarely a conversion table to tell you how many cookies are required to do that. I did a quick test to determine quantities of each that are necessary for an equivalence conversion. As it turned out the magic number is eleven. Eleven Oreos, stripped of their filling, equal 1 cup of crumbs when ground. It takes about 20 famous chocolate wafers to yield that same amount. Greenspan's recipe uses Oreo cookies to make crumbs. I had none in the house, so I had to fall back on my supply of chocolate wafers. It was a novel twist. I hope you'll try this recipe. It really is perfect for a special Valentine's Day dessert, Here's the recipe.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Torte...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Dorie Greenspan

Ingredients:
Crust
1 box chocolate wafer cookies, processed into fine crumbs
1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Small pinch of salt
Crunch
1-1/4 cups salted peanuts, finely chopped, divided use
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips or finely chopped semisweet chocolate
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Dash of ground nutmeg
Filling
2 cups heavy cream
1-1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups creamy peanut butter (not natural)
2 tablespoons whole milk
Topping
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

Directions:
1) To make crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and place it on a baking sheet. Combine chocolate wafer crumbs, melted butter and salt in a small bowl. Toss with a fork to moisten crumbs. Press into a thin layer covering bottom and sides of springform pan to within 1-inch of rim. Freeze crust for 10 minutes. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely before filling.
2) To make crunch: In another small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of chopped peanuts, mini chocolate chips, sugar, espresso powder, cinnamon and nutmeg. Toss with a fork to mix and set aside.
3) To prepare filling: In bowl of a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, whip 2 cups of cream until it holds medium peaks. Beat in 1/4 cup of confectioners’ sugar and whip until cream holds medium-firm peaks. Transfer cream into a separate bowl and refrigerate until needed. Wipe out (do not wash) mixer bowl, replace whisk with paddle attachment, and beat cream cheese with remaining 1 cup of confectioners’ sugar on medium speed until cream cheese is satiny smooth. Beat in peanut butter, whole milk, and 1/4 cup of chopped peanuts until well combined. Using a large rubber spatula, gently stir in about 1/4 of whipped cream to lighten mousse. Still working with spatula, stir in crunchy peanut mixture from step 2 above, then gingerly fold in remaining whipped cream. Scrape mousse into crust, mounding and smoothing top. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight; cover with plastic wrap as soon as the mousse firms.
4) To make topping: To finish torte, put chopped bittersweet chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Leave bowl over water just until chocolate softens and starts to melt, about 3 minutes; remove bowl from saucepan. Bring reserved 1/2 cup of cream to a full boil. Pour cream over chocolate and, working with a rubber spatula, very gently stir together until ganache is completely blended and smooth. Pour ganache over torte, smoothing with a metal icing spatula. Scatter remaining 1/2 cup peanuts over top and chill to set topping, at least 20 minutes. When the ganache is firm, remove the sides of the springform pan. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Yield: 8 to 10 servings.

You might also enjoy these recipes:
Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars - The Parsley Thief
Peanut Butter Pecan Biscotti - Joy the Baker
Peanut Butter Chocolate Macarons - Annie's Eats
Peanut Butter Brownie Pie - What's Cookin' Chicago?
Peanut Butter and Jelly Truffles - A Mingling of Tastes
Peanut Butter Crunch Truffles - Piece of Cake

94 comments:

Pondside said...

Oh my, but that sounds like a legitimate reason for falling off the sensible-food wagon!

muppy said...

mmmmmm i love chocolate and peanut butter! This looks amazing.

Anna A. said...

What an amazing torte, Mary! Btw, you like crackly nutty things, how does millee fuille fit into your profile? It's my favorite!

Premalatha Aravindhan said...

yummy yum...luks delicious...

bellini valli said...

Dorie Greenspan seems to be the "Queen of Cakes". I make a white cake from scratch of hers that is no fail as I's ure this one is as well.

Fabi said...

Oh My God! How can I possibily look at this wonder and not wishing to have a piece of it? Besides, I always have peanut butter and chocolate at home, so the temptation is very strong. Beatiful performance of a great recipe, thank you very much for sharing. Have a very nice week.

penny aka jeroxie said...

OMG... I almost fell off my chair when I saw this. It is gorgeous!

Cheah said...

It's simple awesome!

Alessandra said...

I have always wanted to make a peanut butter/chocolate cake... actually, I only buy the natural and crunchy peanut butter, is that a big problem? Is it necessary to have a smooth one?

ciao

Alessandra

Three-Cookies said...

Nice idea to put expresso and cinnamon in the crunch. Lots of nice flavours and textures. 8-10 servings? Or 4?:)

Big Dude said...

It made my socks go up and down just reading it. Beginning with Reese's Cups I've had a life-long love affair with chocolate and peanut butter. One of my favorite sweet treats is semi sweet chocolate squares dipped in chunky Jif, so I know this is going on the must make list.

Cherine said...

This is absolutely mouthwatering!

Asteri said...

yummy ... yummy !!!!!!! it looks delicious!!!!!!
Have a very nice week!
Cheers

Carol at Serendipity said...

Mary,

This looks amazing. I am picturing the socks going up and down! I was not familiar with Dorie Greenspan so I just spent some time reading her blog and ordered her new book. It is not even 6 am and I have already been shopping!

Have a great week.

Carol

Priyanka said...

Hi Mary....I love your recipes and your blog so I think you are a STYLISH BLOGGER
Please visit my blog and grab your Stylish Blogger Award :)

Pam said...

This sounds amazing!

Clint said...

Since I started following your wonderful blog a month ago, I have gained 6 pounds. I'm not complainin', though.

My Little Space said...

I'll do anything for this cake. LOl! :o) Oh my, it looks so seducing. Bookmarked it for later use. Thanks for the addictive recipe, Mary. Hope you're having a great day too. I'll be busy celebrating the coming Chinese New Year in another 2 more days. See you later.
Blessings, Kristy

Jenn said...

Good little tip on the amount of cookies/wafers that equal a cup. I never do end up counting when I'm doing that!! mmmmmmmm... I love chocolate...I love peanut butter.. Yes, I will have the whole torte please!!

Carol said...

Gorgeous cake! Chocolate and peanut butter, perfect combination!

The Food Hound said...

Oh my gosh, that looks amazing! If only the Booze Hound liked peanut butter! Actually, he likes Reese's, so maybe he would like this. I should try it, if for no other reason than just to lick the batter and eat some Oreos :)

Priya said...

Irresistible torte,soooo yumm!

From the Kitchen said...

Is there a happier "marriage" than that of chocolate and peanuts? I am currently babysitting Dorie's new book while my friend is spending a few months in Florida. It's one of those books that I know belong in my collection.

Best,
Bonnie

PeggyR said...

That looks really good!

Emily Malloy said...

GORGEOUS.

carolyn bradford said...

This looks absolutely, sinfully divine! I'm definitely making this for our Valentine's dessert! Guess I need to have a party! I have to perfect heart shaped plates that I bought at Williams Sonoma many years ago and now they are discontinued I believe. Thanks for the best recipes! Hope your day is wonderful!

Mickey said...

Oh Mary! That is beautiful! I am making this asap...maybe this weekend. I will let you know how it goes. I love coming to your blog for your lovely recipes, your lovely stories AND your lovely pictures. Thanks for sharing it all.
mickey

Sushma Mallya said...

looks beautiful...no one can resist this one...

Kim said...

WOW! this huge torte is for almost everyone, who doesn't like chocolate and peannut butter? Have a good day!

briarrose said...

Beautiful job on this. It looks amazing.

Kristen said...

I need to stop looking at your blog or I'm never going to lose all of this baby weight after Friday (when I'm due!) OR I could just follow your blog so I don't miss anything... :)

Chele said...

What an amazing looking torte. My husband would love this for his birthday!

Katerina said...

I am a well known chocolate lover and this torte looks perfect for me. The decoration you made is great also!

C&G said...

what a masterpiece, stunning cake!

That Girl said...

Chocolate and peanut butter is my favorite chocolate combination.

Dianne said...

OMGoodness! That looks incredible! I will be out and about today and will definitely pick up the ingredients for this one. Peanut butter and chocolate are two of my favorites, but combine them and oh, boy!

Umm Mymoonah said...

Scrumptious torte, looks perfect.

Peggy Clyde. said...

This looks yummy. I have one son who loves peanut butter. Thanks.

Sabienne said...

!!!!
What can I write....my socks go up and down! Amazing! It has everything a desire, fantastic idea. Looks richly and nobly;-)

aipi said...

Delicious! That is one awesome combo.


US Masala

Sweet and Savory said...

I thought that was Dorie's cake. Yours does look lovely.

I have baked a good share of the recipes in that book with the baking group and love her choices.

Beautiful job, Mary.

Cheryl said...

That looks delicious and I think I may be able to manage it!

Monet said...

This has to be one of the most decadent and tempting desserts I've seen this month! I can see why you would want to break from your normal dessert preferences...I think everyone would! I hope you are having a happy and hopeful morning. Many blessings as the week unfolds!

The Blonde Duck said...

I would eat this in about two seconds. The WHOLE thing.

Emily Z said...

My heart skipped a beat when I saw the photo of this. Yum! It looks so mouthwateringly delicious!

nanny said...

chocolate and peanut butter.....Oh My! Looks to pretty to eat!

Holly said...

I am new to your site and LOVING it.. This looks so unbeleivably delicious!!

teresa said...

so very divine! i've never had a torte, but i would eat just about anything with those amazing ingredients!

Ginny said...

This looks truly decadent and divine!

Janet Marie said...

Oh my heavens. :) How decadent! Wonderful! :)

yummychunklet said...

So decadent and delicious!

Mrs. Mix-it said...

OMG this is on my must make list!!! OMG love Peanut Butter and Chocolate

Heather said...

Oh, this cheesecake is fabulous - I made it quite early on in the Dorie Greenspan series. Thank you so much for your nice compliments on my blog - I was needing some encouragement and am now feeling quite chipper!

The Words Crafter said...

This made my mouth water! Free fall, I hear you!

Deb in Hawaii said...

Gosh this looks delicious--I am craving anything chocolate & peanut butter right now. ;-)

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

This looks ridiculously good! I love the first photo where I can see the smooth interior. Mary, you've outdone yourself!

RamblingTart said...

Wow! What a luscious, decadent dessert, Mary. :-) I usually prefer the not-too-sweet ones myself, but I'm a sucker for anything with peanut butter in it. :-)

Sandra said...

I think that peanut butter and chocolate are the beast combo..oh yes and caramel:) Your Torte look fabulous, I just came on your blog and so far I am enjoying! By the way, beautiful photo!

xinex said...

It's a good thing I do not live with you, Mary, or I would weigh 300 lbs, lol....Christine

Christina said...

Thank you so much for visiting my blog and leaving some love! This torte looks amazing! I've subscribed to your blog and will be back often to see what's cooking!

Pam said...

Oh Mary... it looks heavenly!

Joanne said...

Umm yeah. If I made this, there would be no self control. At all. Anywhere in sight. Then again. How could I NOT make it?

Lindsay said...

Nothing better than chocolate and peanut butter! This one looks amazing!

Dragonfly Treasure said...

OMG! I had to wipe up drool off my keyboard!
*hugs*deb

Marguerite said...

This torte looks so amazing and decadent! Chocolate and peanut butter is my Dad's favorite combo, and I'm going to make this for him for Valentine's Day! Thanks for the great recipe!

Maria said...

What a decadent dessert! Love it!

Julie said...

Mary - This looks amazing! Love chocolate and peanut butter together. Such a lovely dessert.

Evan @swEEts said...

Now this is my kind of dessert.. I love chocolate and peanut butter and yours just looks absolutely heavenly!

Gloria said...

OMG dear Mary look absolutely amazing and delicious, gloria

♥LOVE2COOK♥ said...

This is an ultimate temptation! Am so drooling right now, feel like grabbing through the screen! :D

Beth said...

I'm with you on the fruit and lemon desserts, but my girls would go crazy for this one!

Sabrina said...

This looks amazing!!!!! thank you for sharing!!

Katrina said...

Mary - Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm new to my blog too! :) I just got started as you can tell. Having a lot of fun.

This recipe is stunning! Great job!

Abby said...

This looks like it could do some serious damage!!! But man, oh man do I want it!

sweetpeaskitchen.com said...

This looks amazing!!!!! :)

Kankana said...

Absolutely amazing!! I too don't like dessert which are too sweet ..

Rhonda said...

Ahh, only if Elvis were alive to taste this!

Jeannie said...

Sinful! but oh so good!

mara said...

Excellent! Dear Mary good morning and good month! Lots of kisses!

Lucie said...

This looks so perfectly decadent! I don't bake with peanut butter and chocolate much, simply because I know I would eat it all up--just may have to give in to this one!

lena said...

amazing and this is just irresistible!

andreaestes said...

That looks fantastic! Thank you for the comments on my page! Your site is scrumptious!

Rosy said...

WOW. Just WOW. Great dessert. Total death by chocolate and peanut butter.

pigpigscorner said...

My favourite combo! *drools*

A Canadian Foodie said...

Do you bake for clients? Or how does your family eat all of these yummies! I don't like peanut butter in desserts or with chocolate - but, come ON, MARY- the pic of that cake is absolutely stunning. It is teasing me from the screen. It is enticing me from the screen. I feel my adrenaline heightening and fat being stored in my body as we speak just by LOOKIN at it. That is one wickedly gorgeous looking torte!
:)
Valerie

Alisa said...

This would make a perfect Valentines treat. That is absolutely gorgeous!

CaSaundraLeigh said...

Wow--this would definitely be paradise in a pan. All of my favorite flavors combined?! Heaven!!

Plateful said...

Ooh Mary, this looks so delish. I'm glad I visited your blog, gonna bookmark this!

Anna said...

WOW! My only trouble is to find the right ingredients in a different culture where I live.
I must succeed now. I really MUST!

Anne said...

I haven't made this torte in a couple of years and this is a good reminder to make it again. Your photos are stunning as usual, great job!

Elaine said...

Oh, I have GOT to make this! I am visiting my mom in a week for her birthday and peanut butter and chocolate are her absolute favorites. I know she would love this torte. Me, too! Your blog is just gorgeous!

natalie said...

So, 11 oreos = 20 wafers = 1 cup... but how many wafers are in a box (aka: how many oreos do i need to make this delicious cake?) lol

Mary said...

Natalie use 24 Oreos, sans filling, and you'll be fine. You want between 1-3/4 to 2 cups of crumbs. Blessings...Mary

lalit kumar said...

Wow, I love chocolate and what a amazing recipe..
see more : http://www.fazlani.com/

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