you can see where the ganache topping sinks into the filling
“… and someone brought a peanut butter pie, can you imagine that?! It’s like eating peanut butter straight. Ack!” My mom grabbed her neck with both hands and made a gagging noise.
I decided it would be wise not to tell her then that I thought a peanut butter pie sounded very good indeed.
I was not brought up on peanut butter, although there was a time when I was in high school that my mom became so immersed in making peanut butter that my sisters and I were eating it for several months. Have you ever tried natural peanut butter, just peanuts and oil and no additives? It’s a lot grittier than its commercial counterpart but the essence and aroma of peanut is more pronounced.
I can understand why some people don’t like this popular sandwich spread. Although it was promoted as a health food when it was first introduced in 1904, peanut butter is high in fat. It also has a cloying taste that makes my tongue feel that it’s suddenly too big for my mouth. Nevertheless, I love peanut butter but I only eat it when I’m feeling indulgent and can spare the extra calories.
Having said that, I like peanut butter:
on soft, hot bread sprinkled with a little sugar on top. The heat makes the peanut butter ooze down the sides. smeared on a banana, or for an extra special treat, sliced bananas on bread then slathered with Nutella and peanut butter. on French toast
Once a year, I get an urge to make a peanut butter pie. I say ”˜once a year’ because that’s probably how long I need to burn off the entire pie. That’s an exaggeration I know, but this dessert literally screams “CALORIES!” Heck, I love it anyway.
A peanut butter pie is a ready canvas for interpretation, so every year I make a different pie, depending on my mood and what I happen to have in my pantry. This year, I made a graham cracker crust which I mixed with coarsely ground roasted peanuts and Ghirardelli chocolate chips. The filling is a mixture of SkippyÂ® peanut butter and Hershey’s milk chocolate. I had a bar of Nestle Crunch Dark that I broke into pieces and layered over the peanut butter filling. The topping is a simple ganache (Callebaut chocolate and cream) mixed with a little corn syrup for stability and shine.
Texture is important in a peanut butter pie since it’s so cloying and rich. To keep the taste exciting and the mouth wanting more, I add peanuts for crunch, which also serves to highlight the peanut flavor. Different chocolates provide variety ”“ the sweetness of milk chocolate and the smoky tones of dark chocolate play off each other, adding depth to flavor.
I gave my mom a slice of this pie. She loved it, wouldn’t you know.