19 June, 2013

Fluffernutter Bars

When I get in the mood for peanut butter there are only a few things that I want.  Reeses Peanut Butter cups (which I am not allowed to eat anymore) or classic, soft peanut butter cookies.  But, for some odd reason today I wanted another texture element to the cookie.  I remembered back to when one of my roommates introduced me to Fluffernutter Sandwiches.  This is a piece of bread with creamy peanut butter on it and another piece of bread with Marshmallow Fluff on it...you slap it together and you have a Fluffernutter sandwich.  To accomplish those flavors with a cookie though....hmmm...  That would be a stretch.  Time to think outside of the box.  Cookie dough can be made into bars....  Hmm....think, think, think....  OKAY!  I had it...peanut butter cookie bars with a mixture of vegan frosting and ricemellow creme piped onto the top and a nice drizzle of chocolate.  Yes, I think I shall.

Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Cookie Bars
3/4 c. organic creamy peanut butter
1/2 c. vegan buttery spread or Butter Flavored Crisco
1 1/4 c. organic brown cane sugar
3 T. unsweetened organic soy milk (I use Silk)
1 T. vanilla paste
1 egg
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1 3/4 c. all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 F

Line a cookie sheet (I doubled the recipe and used a "jelly roll" pan, which people commonly use as a "cookie sheet" now) with a piece of parchment paper and set it aside.

Beat sugar with your butter then add peanut butter, vanilla, milk, egg and salt.  Mix well, until smooth and creamy.  Add flour and soda and do not over mix the dough.

Spread dough evenly from the middle of the cookie sheet to the corners with a rubber spatula.  It won't look like much, but it will work.  Some people who like a thicker cookie bar may wish to double this recipe.  Bake with the rack in the center of the oven for 25 minutes or until the corners of the sheet of cookie dough start to brown a bit.

Remove from oven to cooling rack.  Allow the sheet to completely cool and wait to cut the bars until you have the fluffer frosting completed.  You don't want your bars to dry out!

Vegan Buttercream Frosting
1/4 c. vegan buttery spread (half stick)
2 c. organic powdered sugar
1/4 c. unsweetened soy milk
1 tsp. vanilla paste

Whip your butter for a bit in your bowl to make sure it is smooth.  Add powdered sugar in, 1 cup at a time, incorporating each cup before adding more.  Drizzle in milk as needed (to keep frosting from seizing as you are mixing) until you reach the consistency of frosting that YOU like.  Whip in the vanilla paste when you have completed the frosting.

Set the bowl aside and grab your Ricemellow Creme and follow recipe below. 

Fluffer Frosting
1/2 recipe of Vegan Buttercream Frosting
1 10 ounce tub of Ricemellow Creme

FOLD the buttercream frosting into the ricemellow creme 1/4 of a cup at a time until you have a good pipable consistency.  Normally I would give an actual measurement, but considering that each person will come up with a different level of desired consistency, it will be hard to give an exact measurement of when you should stop adding frosting.  

**Bottom line, you want what you pipe onto the bars to be a bit MORE ricemellow creme than frosting.  It should be lighter than the buttercream frosting and slightly "airy".**

Slice up your peanut butter cookie bars.  I usually do no larger than 2 x 2 inch bars.  It depends on what they are for.  A potluck....they will be a little smaller, 1 x 1 inch.  For a smaller party at home where there is no other competition on the dessert scene I give my peeps a nice 2 inch x 2 inch bar.  

Pipe little puffs of the fluffer frosting onto each of your completely cooled bars.  Set them aside so the puffs of frosting can set a bit before drizzling the chocolate on top.  Warm chocolate needs to go onto MOSTLY set frosting.

The chocolate drizzle is simply chocolate chips of your choosing and a small amount of vegan butter spread or shortening to help it melt and stay shiny and keep it from getting too hard when it sets.  I typically do 1 T. of vegan buttery spread for every 5 ounces of melted chocolate I have.

Do you see the tiny little flecks of black in the white goo??  That the is the vanilla paste from the buttercream frosting that I mixed with the ricemellow creme.  So...peanut butter, marshmallow frosting with a hint of vanilla and chocolate drizzle on top...  These bars are fanBLOODYtastic!  All of these flavors mooshin' around in your mouth at once are almost the closest thing to Heaven you can get in one bite.  You have to try these at LEAST once..and I say that with a tinge of sarcasm.  You will make these either out of your own desire or because you keep getting requests for them.

This is the kind of junk food a pregnant woman can come up with on the fly...you can thank me later.

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