Monday, January 21, 2013

Baking and Books: Chocolate Peanut Butter Truffles

Whew, this semester has really started off with a bang!  I don't mind it being somewhat front-loaded; hopefully that'll make the end of the semester a little easier.  But it does mean that I'm awfully busy right now.  On top of regular homework, I'm currently writing two presentations and beginning my analysis for a music theory video presentation.  All of these are topics I'm extremely interested in, so I've enjoyed all this prep work.  However, it does mean that I've had very little time for myself, and when I do have some spare reading time, I've found it difficult to get immersed in denser books.  I'm in the middle of both Charlotte Bronte's Villette and Mollie Panter-Downes' One Fine Day, but I needed something a little easier and so now I've begun Edith Wharton's Glimpses of the Moon.  I can hardly believe this is by the author of Ethan Frome!  I had to read that novella in high school English class, and thought it dreadfully depressing.  Glimpses of the Moon, on the other hand, is a gloriously fast-paced and energetic romp.  Utterly delightful, though with its fair share of Wharton-esque romantic tragedy.

Yesterday I got a craving to make something delicious, and remembered a recipe for chocolate peanut butter truffles I'd recently found through one of the baking blogs I follow.  And I had a great excuse to make them, as well - friends had invited us to dinner and hadn't given us any specific instructions regarding what to bring.  They were a huge success!  Quite delicious, and fairly easy to make, because they only include three ingredients: chocolate (I used a mix of milk and semi-sweet chocolate), peanut butter, and cream cheese.  Here's a closer-up photo:

Let me note that if we owned a melon baller, these would have been a snap.  We don't, so I spent many minutes trying to figure out how to get the right shape.  Measuring spoons, metal spoons, plastic spoons, tin foil, and plastic wrap all failed, so I finally just dug in there and shaped spheres with my (clean) hands.  Which explains the odd shapes and irregular sizes...though I assure you this didn't interfere at all with their general yumminess!  I coated half in powdered sugar and half in cocoa powder.  And happily, we still have a few left over from the dinner party, so we can still enjoy a truffle or two today!

You can find the recipe here.  Enjoy!


  1. I'm intrigued by The Glimpses of the Moon. At the risk of sounding completely ignorant, I must confess I've never even heard of Edith Wharton. But now I want to read this!

    I know exactly what you mean when you say you need something a little easier. Sometimes, unless you have a good chunk of time to completely devote to a book, it's difficult to make much progress.

    And peanut butter truffles? YUM!

    1. That's why I love book bloggers - I get to hear about all sorts of great authors I wasn't familiar with before. Edith Wharton is one of the greats in American fiction. She tended to write about class issues and romantic tragedy in the early 20th century. Her most famous book is Age of Innocence, followed by the novella Ethan Frome, which a lot of people have to read in high school. I think Glimpses of the Moon would be a great one to start with, though, if you want to try her out. It's light-hearted and a very easy read, but includes a number of her standard themes (class, money, marriage, duty and responsibility).