Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

Recipe at the end. Below is a short story about our adventure with an earthquake in Maryland.

Yesterday will be a day that my family won't soon forget.  Our day started out fresh, early and filled with anticipation.  It was the first day of high school for Drake and the first day of college for my daughter in two of her classes...they are both freshmen.  I was impressed at how each of them appeared to be cool, calm and very together, as they headed out on this day to what would prove to be very memorable and a little bit "shaky" or "rattled" or a "moving" experience.

OH DID I HAVE PLANS too!  I made a list of the things I wanted to do, in fact, I even took pictures. I thought this will make the best post tomorrow because I can be creative, thoughtful and have a little time to myself and share my deep and inner thoughts...WELL, we know how that turned out...LOL

I got to spend the whole day with a cute princess!  And oh what a day it was...LOL

Oh, I had thoughts and I had to dig deep to not completely implode with fear.  Silly right? I wanted yesterday to be special for the kids so I made peanut butter cups and had planned on Beef and Peppers...two things we all love.  I thought this day is going to be perfect.

My daughter the day before had asked for Fried Pickles and around 1:30 I decided that I would surprise her and make a batch to have ready.  She would be home in an hour and these would be awaiting her return, with the Wicked Awesome Sauce of course...LOL

Cory was working in the basement, Isabella was playing a game on my computer and I was busily cooking...we were all settled.  Working and playing to our heart's content.  Looking back, it's hard to remember everything that was going on at once.  They say time stops and things move slowly when fear, adrenaline, and chaos take over...and I guess it did.

I felt the very subtle beginnings of a sifting.  Like when you are gently sifting powdered sugar.  It's slow, easy and with a light touch.  I stop.  I think.  You question.   Maybe it is....and then at that moment, you realize that it's not stopping.

I ran to the basement door, yelled for Cory to get out of the basement that we were having an earthquake.  I froze.  Then time started moving so slow.  I yelled (maybe screamed) for Isabella to run to Mommy..faster...faster...our house was rocking, groaning and the floor was like walking on ice.  FEAR!

We ran from the house as fast as we could...not thinking that oil was boiling on my stove, not knowing what was to come and worried.  Two of my kids were gone, at school and no way to reach them.

I immediately tried calling my Mom and my daughter ( Drake would not have a phone in HS) , I was shaking, crying, FEAR had set in.  When it stopped I ran and posted on my page...I thought someone needs to know what just happened.  FB phone did not.  All lines were down.  At that moment I got a message from my Mom saying she had just seen the news.  I could get messages but not call out. You feel trapped when you cannot reach someone.

We love to skype back and forth and this was our only form of communication for a while on this day.  When I heard their voice, I lost it.  I can't explain it...I just could not stop crying and shaking.  Isabella would not leave my side.  She was worried the house was going to "dance" again.  The mind of a 4-year-old is amazing.  I am feeling fear and anxiety.  I see and hear disaster and through her eyes, she sees dancing.  I love that.  What would I give to be a child again....such innocence?

It took a minute for me to gather my wits.  We talked with the grandparents and things calmed down.  We met our son walking home from school.  Cory went and got Rye from the college.  In the end, we were all safe and together.

I have to say we ate those peanut butter cups and passed on dinner.  Our stomachs were too upset to eat a tasty and delicious meal.  That night we gathered our family and talked.  We each had a different tale to tell.

Drake was in the cafeteria with about 600 freshmen.  He said that everyone thought the initial shaking was from a group of kids running down the stairs, then it HIT and the teachers realized what was going on.  Drake said he remembers the floor being like running with your socks on cardboard.  It was hard to walk.  They had large bleachers and other items stacked very high and as they ran out, everything was swaying.  The kids all made it out...but the freshman class will never forget their first day.  He said that seeing the cafeteria today will be weird because it won't be moving.

Rye was on the third floor of the Fine Arts building sitting in a chair with rollers.  She said they all stopped, it got quiet as everyone tried to process what was happening and then the rolling of tables and chairs started.  She actually was not afraid and the kids were all able to exit the school with very little problems.  Her biggest worry was us.   We could not communicate and so she imagined the worse. She knew I would be cooking and was afraid that maybe I had gotten hurt in the kitchen or her Dad in the basement.  Fortunately, she was able to get our text finally and we arrived at the school. Our 10-minute drive took 45, traffic was terrible as everyone was trying to get kids.

A moment, an unexpected event in time.  A memory we will carry with us forever.  The emotion, the reliving it, the coming together.  As I sat in my living room last night with my family, I was grateful and realized that this day is perfect.   We are together and we are safe!

 Peanut Butter Cups 

The filling will make enough for about 20-24 cups.  This depends on what size of cup you get and how full you make the center in each one.

1 bag of milk chocolate chips
1 cup of crackers, broken into small pieces (not smashed) You can use Saltines or Ritz.
1 cup of peanut butter, smooth
1 cup of powdered sugar
1 tsp. of vanilla

Mini cupcake or candy wrappers

I used a Pyrex 2 cup glass measuring holder to melt the chocolate chips in the microwave.  This is a slow process because you do not want to ruin the chocolate.  I started with 1 cup of chips and in increments of 35 seconds (4X's), I heated and stirred the chocolate.  The melted chocolate will help the others to melt when you stir in between each heating.  If you have a double boiler and prefer to warm and melt your chocolate this way, please do so.  I don't own one of those.

I put my crackers (GF Glutino Table Crackers) into a plastic back and broke them into small pieces.  You want pieces and not crumbs.  The crunch adds a lot to the filling.

In a bowl combine the peanut butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, and broken crackers.  Mix well.

I lined up my cups on a cookie sheet and fill the bottom of each cup with a little bit of melted chocolate.  I made these a few weeks ago and added too much chocolate on the top and bottom and we did not like this.  We like a little bit of chocolate with our peanut butter.  I put the cups in the fridge for a few minutes, about 5, to get firm.

On top of the chocolate, add your peanut butter filling.  I used my hands and shaped the filling to fit on top of the chocolate.  I would say that the filling was about a 1/2 inch, here or there.

Melt more chocolate as needed to have enough for the top of your peanut butter cup.  Once your cups are made with: chocolate, peanut butter and chocolate return to the fridge to set.  You can leave them in the fridge or take them out.  We like our candy cold, so they are still in the fridge.

I had some leftover filling and this is what I did with it.  I rolled them into balls and dusted them with powdered sugar.  OH MY!  Next time I will make enough of the filling to make more of these babies.  They were so good.  ENJOY!

Written by Sherron Watson


  1. What a beautiful and touching story ... and the Peanut butter cups look so amazingly gooood! I bet they were very comforting after a scare like that.

  2. I don't know how you do with different schedules of each kids - I have just two and my week was so hectic! >_< I probably need a big calender like yours to fill out. I can't keep up with iPhone too.... Your PB cups sound yummy - wish I have a couple of them while I blog visit. :-) I didn't know you quilt. My mom is a quilt teacher in Japan.

  3. Thanks Nami...I love to quilt! I bet your Mom's quilts are beautiful...I love the Japanese fabrics. They are a bit expensive to buy here.

  4. This would be such a scary ordeal, I just can't imagine! I always worry about something like that happening when my family are all in different areas. I am so glad to hear that all your family is safe. I am going to try these PB cups. I don't know how your nerves were steady enough to even think of cooking after the quake. I am going to try your recipe and I know my husband will send his thanks for the candy!

    1. Lenoria, It's been a year but as I read this piece again, tears welled up in my eyes. It was a scary experience and the worst was that my whole family was not together. I know that when my Mom makes these for my Dad, the tray does not stay full for very long…LOL I hope your dear husband enjoys this yummy treat! Have a wonderful day.

    2. I'm trying to figure out where you live. You have earthquakes but you have a basement. I have lived in So. Calif. most of my life and been in many earthquakes. But we don't (usually) have basements here. What part of the country do you live???

  5. IT WOULD MAKE MORE SENSE TO HAVE THE RECIPE FOR THE CUPCAKES THAN TO HAVE TO PRINT THE ENTIRE CONTENTS. Waste a lot of computer ink and paper. Think next time!! I even tried the printer friedly and the same thing all the printed materia. Good Grief!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. cupcakes? I think you're in the wrong recipe - or didn't clearly read this one...Instead of berating bloggers who are just here to enjoy what they love to do - try to realize that your problem with printing the recipe is not the fault of the blog writer. She is one of many bloggers on this system and it's not her fault if something technical isn't working to your satisfaction. Maybe you should time.

    2. Hello Anonymous,

      Thank you for your feedback. First of all, the recipe is for peanut butter cups and not cupcakes. I also have tried the printer friendly button and it does work, it gives you the option to have images or no images AND you can pick the page to print. That would be ONE page for the recipe, I believe it is number 3 of the 4 without images.

      If you don't like this option, then you can very easily with your mouse drag over the part you do want, copy and paste into an open file in word. Then you have the option to only print what you want.

      I personally don't understand the need for rudeness in your comments, but I understand the everyone has a bad day and so I will forgive you.

      As for my ability to think, I am quite capable of thinking, spelling and responding in an adult manor.

      Thank you again for the feedback.

    3. Thanks Sherron,

      I am not a blogger, however I read them often and it is so fun to experience things from others or to remember thru another, or maybe just put yourself and your family in the same shoes. People today need to stop and breathe. Four pieces of paper "really" for one fantastic recipe and a great story that makes you sit back in your busy day to stop and think of what you are really thankful for. I think the four pieces is a small price. Don't sweat the small stuff. The heart attack from the stress isn't worth it. Thank you Sherron, I think I will call my children and tell them I love them and pass a great recipe on.

      I will be back to visit often.

      Tina Vowles

  6. I read this recipe with little hope that I could try it, because it calls for saltines or Ritz crackers and I'm not sure that there's a gluten free substitute. To my amazement, you used a gluten free cracker substitute. I wasn't sure what would work, because I don't buy a lot of GF crackers. If it worked for you, it'll work for me...thank you.

    1. I am so glad that the recipe will work for you. I buy my gluten free products from whole foods and my favorite cracker to use is by Glutino, the table cracker. It's crispy and thin and works great. Have a fabulous day!

  7. This recipe looks so yummy! Next time I go to store I will have to get some milk chocolate. My friend got me hooked on another similar recipe. Spread peanut butter on ritz and top with another ritz. Melt white chocolate in microwave. Dip the peanut butter ritz sandwiches in the white chocolate and put on wax or parchment paper. Let set. Yum!

    I was raised in Calif and have lived in Alaska past 27+ years. I will never get used to earthquakes. I totally understand being scared to death! ;)

    You have some very yummy looking recipes on your blog.

    thank you for sharing,

    1. I love the idea of dipping the ritz in the chocolate..YUM. Thank you for stopping by and commenting. I have been to Alaska once in January for 8 weeks. It was 40 below zero, up by Denali and we loved every minute of it. Absolutely beautiful! Enjoy your day Matsugirl.

  8. gee, the story was really unbelieveable!! I can't imagine living thru something like that..with the worry of the kids,hubby, and friends, & family...wondering if all of them were OK. I live in In. and we have had some very mild earthquakes...and that has been enough for me:) I wanted to thank you for the recipe and can't wait to try it. I always make a holiday platter of cookies and candy for the guys/gals who do the oil changes for me and others who have been so kind and thoughtful...(postman, doctor's office help, ect.). I just happened to find this recipe and plan on returing to visit your blog often....have a "great" day!! debbie/

    1. Thank you Debbie for the kind comments. These would be perfect for any holiday platter. My Mom often will take a tray to church on Sundays and these are always a favorite, especially among the men. They love the extra crunch of the cracker. Have an amazing day!

  9. This recipe looks so good I may never buy another Reese Cup again. Thank you for posting it and your gut wrenching blog on what could have turned out to be so much worse. The good Lord was really watching over you and your family that day.

  10. Could. U. Use. Crunchy instead of creamy peanut butter . Leave out crackers

    1. I have made them with chunky PB, rolled into balls & dipped into CHOC these go over well at parties.

  11. I used semi sweet morsels. Haven't triennial them yet, they are chillin in the fridge.


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