A girl with God and a lot of yeses in the middle

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Wet, wet, wet

My friends it is humid in Haiti.  I have not ever experienced this kind of humidity in my life.  You feel like you are wet from sweat, but then there is this external wetness that comes from the air.  I went on a run through our neighborhood last week and the air is so oppressively thick, it's hard to breathe.  It's weird.

It's made for some very interesting cooking & beauty challenges.  I tried to straighten my hair Friday afternoon and it immediately curled back.  So no more attempts to straighten hair in Haiti for me.  On a different note, I found some chocolate chips in Port Au Prince about a month ago and had been waiting to come up with some master treat to make.  Friday night was the night.  I decided to make unofficial Reese's peanut butter cups.  I made them once in college, but I wanted them here.  We live in the sugar capital of Haiti so it's not hard to get the insane amounts of powdered sugar that I needed for the middle.

Here's a really simple recipe if you heart desires to make homemade peanut butter cups (trust me, they taste better than the store bought ones)

Melt an entire bag of milk chocolate chips; the best way to do this is to place the chips in a bowl over a small pot of boiling water.  If you melt them in the microwave they might burn, and if you melt them straight on the stove you have an almost guaranteed burn on your way.  You'll have to mix them often to get them fully melted so that the chocolate will drip.

In a cupcake pan fill the bottom of a cupcake liner (the paper things) and the sides of the liner half way up.  Create a thin layer of chocolate along the bottom and sides of the cupcake liners.  You could also use a mini cupcake pan and line the entire liner with chocolate.  Then place them in the fridge for an hour or the freezer for a little less time.  Because of the humidity and heat here, I put mine in the freezer while I went to dinner Friday night.

While the chocolate is setting in the fridge/freezer, in a separate bowl mix about 1 cup of peanut butter with about 1.5 cups of powdered sugar.  Add a tsp of vanilla if you want, I didn't and they were great!  The vanilla will make them taste a little different and give you a runnier texture.  You may need to experiment with this combo.  I did.  I just kept tasting it to see if tasted normal.  But I think 1 cup of peanut butter and 1.5 cups of powdered sugar should do the trick, just taste it first.

Pull out the hardened chocolate shells and put a normal spoon size of the peanut butter mixture in the bottom part of the cupcake shell.  Make sure you kind of smooth out the peanut butter in the shell or you'll end up with with a mix of chocolate and they won't look as pretty.  Once you smooth out the peanut butter cover the mixture with the rest of your melted chocolate.  Make sure you pour enough chocolate in the cup to meet the top of where you had coated the sides of the cupcake liners (does that make sense).

Put them back in the fridge/freezer and wait for the chocolate to harden.  Then eat them, they are yummy.

Now, here's the problem here.  It's is so humid here.  We don't have air conditioners in our house which air conditioners not only make a room/house cooler, but they dry them out.  You will most likely not have this problem, but as soon as I pulled these cups out of the freezer the other night they started to melt.  There was like a 20 second window to eat one after they came out of the freezer, or it was a melty gloppy mess.  It was so bizarre.  The weirdest thing was that they didn't just start melting they started to sweat.  From the air there was condensation on the top of the chocolate.  You are probably not as weirded out by this as I am, but I thought it was bizarre.  I never realized how much air conditioners aid in the cooking of food.

Try to make these cups and let me know if it worked.  I've really grown to love cooking here and everything has to be from scratch which I just think is super fun.  I do everything un-scientifically and mostly by trial and error, so if it doesn't work the way I think give me some recommendations.  Cooking from scratch is so fun and it generally tastes way better.

Happy Tuesday friends!

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