The trick-or-treaters who show up at our door this year might just end up with these tasty home-made peanut butter balls in their bags, providing the occupants of this household don’t eat them all first.
My house is far enough away from other houses on the island that my goblins are sparse, and are usually the children of friends. I often make caramel corn or popcorn balls, and Toby crosses fingers that we’ll end up with only two or three little visitors because he is happy to polish off the remainder. Perhaps you are similarly blessed to live where nieces, nephews, cousins, and the children of friends show up on Halloween, and their moms and dads are happy to see homemade treats.
Rosemary Leonard of Veazie sent this recipe along last December after reading the buckeyes recipe that I offered at Christmas. She wrote, “Have you ever tried this recipe? I seem to like it better than the buckeyes. It is not so sweet and I think the balls hold their shape better.” Rosemary reports that she picked this recipe up forty-five years ago from a collection shared by Orono teachers. I thought I’d give it a try for Halloween.
I’ll bet you have the ingredients on hand; nothing exotic: graham crackers, peanut butter confectioner’s sugar, and chocolate chips. I used our favorite all-natural peanut butter (the kind that has only peanuts and salt in the ingredient list.) It may be that if you use a smoother, more homogenized sort, your peanut butter balls will be a little less crunchy than mine, but our young friend Kate, who is staying with us for a while, thought the crunchiness was a good thing. And I ended up agreeing with Rosemary that these are not as sweet which I think is a good thing.
When you mix the peanut butter and crackers together, you will find that they make a very stiff mixture, practically impossible to manage with a spoon. Use a mixer, or dive in with your hands to knead them together.
The recipe calls for a small amount of parafin to add to the melted chocolate but I preferred to make a ganache by adding cream to the chips as I melted them. It hardens enough that you can pick them up to eat without getting sticky.
You will have to tuck these candies into a little plastic bag or cover with plastic wrap, otherwise they’ll get all mashed up by candy bars and apples in the trick-or-treater’s bags.
- 2 cups peanut butter (16 ounce jar)
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about one and a half packages
- 1 ½ cups confectioner’s sugar
- 2 cups chocolate chips
- Mix together the peanut butter, crumbs, and confectioner’s sugar, until it forms a solid mass.
- Melt the chocolate chips over a very low temperature or in the microwave.
- Dribble in a little cream, stirring until the mixture is glossy and smooth.
- Roll the balls in the chocolate to cover and set out on waxed or parchment paper to harden.