Tag Archives: easy

{peanut butter crack bars}

i’m sorry to do this to you.  really, i am.  because i am fair and kind, i will warn you: these bars are highly addictive – exercise caution in their presence.

these peanut butter crack bars owe their high addiction factor to two variables: they are childs’ play to make and they’re terribly easy to eat.  their moreishly smooth and creamy peanut butter base is topped with a thin lid of chocolate melted with peanut butter – a highway to the danger zone, if there ever was one.  i dare you not to consume spoonfuls of the base before it makes its way to the pan.

i found this recipe on la creativite de la fille and have tweaked it ever so slightly, so i am sharing my version of her lovely recipe below.

the main tweak i made was to use natural peanut butter instead of regular, processed peanut butter.  i’m always cautious when doing this, though, as there are instances where it just doesn’t work.  in this case, however, i’m happy to report that it worked out brilliantly (probably due in part to the fact that they’re not baked).  to compensate for the natural peanut butter and the unsalted butter substitutions, i’ve added a little bit of needed salt.  i also upped the quantity of peanut butter, which makes my version more peanutty-sweet than knock-your-teeth-out sweet.

and, for those of you who don’t trust yourselves in the presence of this confection, i can tell you that a half-recipe fits quite nicely into a standard loaf pan, which makes these bars far less dangerous.

•  •  •

peanut butter crack bars (adapted slightly from ‘creativite de la fille’, who credits ‘let’s dish’)

for the base:
1 cup unsalted butter, melted
2 cups graham cracker crumbs (i blitzed more or less 1 sleeve of graham crackers in my food processor)
2 cups icing sugar
1 1/4 cups natural peanut butter
1/4 tsp of salt

for the topping:
4 tbsp natural peanut butter
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

•in a large bowl, mix all of the base ingredients together until well blended. tip into an ungreased 9″x13″ pan and pat down evenly.
•melt the topping ingredients together (i do this in the microwave on 50% power for 60 seconds, stopping to stir, then in 30 second intervals, stirring each time, until it is melted. you can also do this in a pyrex bowl over a pan of simmering water, stirring frequently). pour overtop the base and spread evenly.
•refrigerate a minimum of 1 hour before cutting into squares.
•if you live in a hot/humid climate, or if you’re storing them for more than a day, you’ll want to keep these in the fridge.  either way, you’ll want them in an airtight container.

•  •  •

Advertisements

18 Comments

Filed under baking

mighty {stash baskets}

this is the project that marked my return to sewing.

i learned to sew as a youngster (on my sew easy) and carried on with it right through high school.  my twenties, however, saw me neglecting my sewing skills in favour of travel and adventure.  when i finally settled long enough to start nesting again, i bought my first grown-up sewing machine.  despite moving with me from the arctic to the rockies and from the rockies to ontario, my machine didn’t see much regular use until i faced 3 months away from work after knee surgery.  i found myself a copy of sew liberated and became inspired.  i started searching for fabric shops and discovered the likes of amy butler and purl soho online (this would be akin to a trendy bargain-hunter finding h&m).  i planned all kinds of nifty projects to while away my time off, and this was my first.

i chose molly’s sewn stash basket pattern from the purl bee (one of the most amazing craft blogs ever).  these make great multi-purpose storage baskets – perfect for corralling yarn, books, knickers, extra toilet paper…they have so much potential!

the bird basket was take one.  i chose lightweight cotton for both the exterior and interior (that great bird fabric was from ikea), which i learned wasn’t particularly well suited for this use.  even though they were stabilized with a mid-weight interfacing, the fabrics weren’t sturdy enough for the basket to stand up on its own when it was empty.  still, it’s perfect for holding mitts and scarves and shopping bags – all of the bits and bobs that collect near the front door.

i wised up for take two.  i used heavier canvas-weight fabric for the exterior and the lining, et voila – they stand on their own and hold their shape nicely.  i thought that the mama basket needed a baby basket, so i modified the pattern in order to make a smaller version of the  purl soho size.  aren’t they cute together?

actually, when i think back, i made another slight modification – instead of hand stitching much of the bottom and back seams as instructed (sooo tedious and time-consuming, not to mention super difficult to do with 4 to 6 layers of canvas-weight material), i machine-sewed everything and it worked out perfectly (but see the safety caveat below).

these baskets taught me that i need to sew and create.  they led me to discover that there are legions of like-minded crafty folk out there, eager to share their patterns, ideas and experiences.  they also taught me a valuable safety lesson worth noting…whilst powering my machine through said thick layers, my needle broke and the tip flew from the machine, narrowly missing my left eyeball.  yikes!  from thereafter i donned my cycling glasses whenever sewing the thickest sections.  who says sewing is for sissies?

8 Comments

Filed under sewing