- ¼ cup cream cheese
- 1½ cups smooth peanut butter
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 8 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 fluid ounces bourbon
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 12 ounces milk chocolate, chopped
For the Peanut Butter Balls:
Combine the cream cheese, peanut butter and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer. Using a paddle, beat on medium speed until smooth. Add the sugar and butter and beat on the lowest speed until it is combined, scraping the bowl various times. Reserve.
For the Milk Chocolate Coating:
Temper the milk chocolate by placing 10 ounces in a double boiler and stirring until it is completely smooth and the temperature reaches 105°F on an instant-read thermometer.
Remove the bowl from heat. Stir in the remaining 2 ounces of chocolate, a little at a time until melted. Let the chocolate cool to 82°F.
Place the chocolate back over the double boiler and reheat until it reaches between 85°F to 87°F. Remove the bowl from heat.
Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Use a 1-tablespoon-size ice cream scoop (#60) or a tablespoon measuring spoon to scoop out a ball of filling. Roll the filling in your hands form a ball. Place the ball on the prepared sheet and repeat until all of the candies have been shaped.
Using a fork or large skewer, dip each ball into the tempered chocolate until completely coated.
Peanut butter balls may be made 3 to 5 days ahead and stored at room temperature. Substitute dark chocolate for milk chocolate coating, the initial temperature should reach 120°F and the reheated temperature should be between 88°F to 91°F
Milk chocolate, salt and peanut butter with Pinot Noir. Yes, Pinot Noir. Look for a Pinot that has a hint of residual sweetness and dark berry flavors. I recommend 2015 Sonoma-Cutrer Russian River Valley Pinot Noir, Sonoma Valley, California, expresses dark fruit, with a complex earthy and nutty palate.