Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie

There are so many things I want to say for this post...but I'm not sure I can fully express everything that I am feeling. But I will try.

Being a military spouse, I am constantly faced with the fear, and sometimes the reality, of having no tomorrow.

My husband is often in danger and every random and unexpected knock at the door sends my heart straight into my feet.

I often wonder how it is "on the other side."

What is civilian life like? Why do we do this? Why does he have this job? Wouldn't it be easier if we didn't always have to worry??

Spending this past weekend with The Hubble was fantastic! Seeing him meet his little baby was such a blessing. But watching him have to leave 3 short days later broke my heart.

Civilians don't have to deal with this right??

The husband's get to stay home. They get to come home for dinner every night. They get to watch their children grow up.

At the end of last week, I continuously saw all kinds of twitter activity about this thing called #apieformikey. Having Baby N, being in the hospital, coming home, then welcoming home The Hubble, I didn't look into it too far.

Until, finally, things settled a bit and I realized this thing wasn't going to go away.

On Friday, I finally clicked a link and that link shattered my rose colored thinking about civilian life.

The link took me over to In Jennie's Kitchen where Jennie tells us about the sudden and untimely death of her husband. Mikey's favorite pie was a chocolate peanut butter pie and Jennie kept telling herself that she would make it for him tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow. And now tomorrow no longer exists for them.

Her one wish for support from this food community of ours was for everyone to make #apieformikey (a chocolate peanut butter pie) and share it with loved ones this past Friday.

I made the mistake that Jennie made and started telling myself that maybe I would make it "tomorrow." Then I stopped.

I looked at my TWO children. I looked at The Hubble. I thought about tomorrow and how it may not come for us.

Then I made a chocolate peanut butter pie.

Then I called my family over and we shared this "love pie."

I know my pie was late. Jennie wanted us to share it on Friday and mine was shared on Sunday. But I'm sure Jennie and Mikey won't mind my tardiness. I figure it's better late than never right??

And if you hadn't heard about #apieformikey, I suggest you make a chocolate peanut butter pie to share with the ones you love.

And try to remember to cherish every moment with your loved ones, because sometimes tomorrow never comes.

Place your cookies in a food processor and grind them up until they are fine crumbs.

Dump those cookie crumbs in a bowl and add the melted butter. Stir it up until the mixture is well moistened. Press the mixture into the bottom and a little up the sides of a springform pan.

At this point, you can either continue on with a no-bake crust or pop it in the oven for a few minutes to make it crispy. The choice is yours. I baked mine.

Throw together your ganache. Place the chocolate chips in a bowl with the butter. Heat up the heavy cream then pour that hot stuff over the chocolate and butter. Let them sit for a few seconds then whisk away until smooth.

Pour the ganache into the crust and spread it out. Then sprinkle with the chopped peanuts. Throw that in the fridge while you make the filling.

Next up! Filling! Cream together the peanut butter and cream cheese.

Mix in the powdered sugar and vanilla.

Then the cool whip.

Pour it all into the crust and spread it out. Refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight.

Remove the pie from the pan, garnish with mini chocolate chips.

Slice, serve and enjoy with your loved ones!!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie

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  • 25 Oreo cookies
  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup peanuts, chopped
  • 8 ounce cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 8 ounces cool whip, thawed
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 inch springform pan.
  2. Place the cookies in a food processor and process until they are fine crumbs (if you don't have a food processor, place the cookies in a large zipper bag and roll with a rolling pin until fine crumbs form).
  3. Place the cookie crumbs in a medium mixing bowl and add the melted butter. Stir with a fork until all the crumbs are well moistened. 
  4. Press crumb mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the springform pan. 
  5. Bake for 5-7 minutes to set. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. (This step is optional. The crust can be pressed into the springform pan and used without baking. I just like the crispiness the baking time provides)
  6. While crust is cooling, make the ganache. Place the chocolate chips and butter in a small mixing bowl. Heat the heavy cream over medium heat until just boiling. Pour the cream over the chocolate and butter; allow to sit about 30 seconds then whisk until smooth.
  7. Pour the ganache into the bottom of the crust and spread with a rubber spatula until evenly distributed.
  8. Sprinkle the chopped peanuts evenly over the ganache.
  9. Place the pan in the fridge while you prepare the filling. 
  10. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the peanut butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  11. Mix in the cool whip until no white streaks are seen.
  12. Pour the filling into the pan atop the crust, ganache and chopped peanuts. Spread with a rubber spatula until even.
  13. Place pie in refrigerator at least 3 hours or overnight.
  14. Immediately before serving, remove from fridge and garnish with mini chocolate chips or ganache.
  15. To remove from the pan, run a knife along the edge of the crust to release from the sides of the pan. Open and remove the sides of the springform pan. Use a cake lifter or large spatula to remove the pie from the bottom of the pan.
  16. Slice, serve and enjoy with loved ones.
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