Peanut Butter Torte

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TWDThis was my first torte, and according to my coworkers, it was delicious! In fact, one of the executives even called it wicked. As for me? Well, I don’t even like mousse-y type stuff and even I thought it was pretty good. Yes, I have a thing with textures and food. I’m weird like that.

Peanut Butter TorteAnyway, while this was easy to make, I found it quite time consuming. Lots of chopping and cleaning up Oreo cookie crumbs–oh wait, that was just me? The end result however, was magnificant. Everyone kept walking by asking if I really made it and said it was almost too pretty to eat.

I made a few modifications to the original recipe by omitting the coffee and nutmeg (hate hate hate nutmeg), and I used at least 30 Oreos for the crust. Other than that, I followed everything else. Photos of the process here.

1 ¼ c. finely chopped salted peanuts (for the filling, crunch and topping)
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon instant espresso powder (or finely ground instant coffee)
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
½ c. mini chocolate chips (or finely chopped semi sweet chocolate)
24 Oreo cookies, finely crumbed or ground in a food processor or blender
½ stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Small pinch of salt
2 ½ c. heavy cream
1 ¼ c confectioners’ sugar, sifted
12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 ½ c salted peanut butter – crunchy or smooth (not natural; I use Skippy)
2 tablespoons whole milk
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate finely chopped

Getting ready: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch Springform pan and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat.
Toss ½ cup of the chopped peanuts, the sugar, espresso powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and chocolate chops together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Put the Oreo crumbs, melted butter and salt in another small bowl and stir with a fork just until crumbs are moistened. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and up the sides of the spring form pan (they should go up about 2 inches on the sides). Freeze the crust for 10 minutes.

Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then transfer it to a rack and let it cool completely before filling.

Working with a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, whip 2 cups of the cream until it holds medium peaks. Beat in ¼ cup of the confectioners’ sugar and whip until the cream holds medium-firm peaks. Crape the cream into a bowl and refrigerate until needed.

Wipe out (do not wash) the bowl, fit the stand mixer with the paddle attachment if you have one, or continue with the hand mixer, and beat the cream cheese with the remaining 1 cup confectioners’ sugar on medium speed until the cream cheese is satiny smooth. Beat in the peanut butter, ¼ cup of the chopped peanuts and the milk.

Using a large rubber spatula, gently stir in about one quarter of the whipped cream, just to lighten the mousse. Still working with the spatula, stir in the crunchy peanut mixture, then gingerly fold in the remaining whipped cream.

Scrape the mouse into the crust, mounding and smoothing the top. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight; cover with plastic wrap as soon as the mousse firms.

To Finish The Torte: put the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Leave the bowl over the water just until the chocolate softens and starts to melt, about 3 minutes; remove the bowl from the saucepan.

Bring the remaining ½ cup cream to a full boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate and, working with a rubber spatula, very gently stir together until the ganache is completely blended and glossy.

Pour the ganache over the torte, smoothing it with a metal icing spatula. Scatter the remaining ½ cup peanuts over the top and chill to set the topping, about 20 minutes.

When the ganache is firm, remove the sides of the Springform pan; it’s easiest to warm the pan with a hairdryer, and then remove the sides, but you can also wrap a kitchen towel dampened with hot water around the pan and leave it there for 10 seconds. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Recipe from Baking: From My Home To Yours by Dorie Greenspan.


21 Responses to “Peanut Butter Torte”

    Heather Peskin on 1 May 6th, 2008 7:02 am

    Great torte and I love the thumbnail process pictures! I also take my Dorie productions to work – it’s good to see how appreciated they are.

    noskos on 2 May 6th, 2008 7:16 am

    Great looking pie!!

    Christie on 3 May 6th, 2008 7:25 am

    You’re right, this does look like an extreme undertaking. But that picture alone makes me want to test my skills at torte-making!

    Rebecca on 4 May 6th, 2008 8:41 am

    Tuesdays with Dorie: Fattening Up Our Co-Workers Weekly. 😉

    Lemon Tartlet on 5 May 6th, 2008 8:59 am

    Your pics are always so good!

    Caitlin on 6 May 6th, 2008 10:18 am

    Very pretty! I agree with Rebecca – this is a total excuse to fatten up our coworkers!

    Dianne on 7 May 6th, 2008 10:43 am

    I often send TWD recipes to work with Jamison to share. Your torte looks fabulous!

    kim on 8 May 6th, 2008 1:42 pm

    yum, it looks beautiful! the 24 oreos were definitely not enough, next time i’ll know to use more!

    Christine on 9 May 6th, 2008 2:20 pm

    Beautiful pie! You fatten your co-workers I am getting my neighbors!

    Cara on 10 May 6th, 2008 5:01 pm

    Congrats on your first torte! It looks beautiful. I also had issues with the oreo crust being too thin, but unlike you, I didn’t even bother adding more….wish I had. Yours looks great!

    Heather on 11 May 6th, 2008 6:57 pm

    Great job! Looks delicious!

    Mary Ann on 12 May 6th, 2008 7:34 pm

    Looks great. Lucky co-workers!

    steph (whisk/spoon) on 13 May 6th, 2008 8:54 pm

    bet you were employee of the day (or maybe even month) for that! looks good!

    Kelly on 14 May 7th, 2008 10:47 am

    I only made half so my co-workers missed this one but I am sure yours enjoyed it. Looks great!

    Melissa on 15 May 8th, 2008 1:40 pm

    Lucky coworkers you have!

    Lemon Tartlet on 16 May 9th, 2008 10:20 am

    Don’t you love it when they ask if you really made it? Yours looks so tasty!

    Paula on 17 May 9th, 2008 7:55 pm

    Great looking torte! you must be so popular at work!!

    Natalie on 18 May 13th, 2008 8:57 pm

    Looks great, and I wish I’d used more Oreos. Your crust is so tall and lovely!

    JacqueOH on 19 May 22nd, 2008 5:59 am

    Mmmmm, it looks delish! I like the in process photos, makes me feel like I was there.

    Beverly from Birmingham, MI on 20 September 2nd, 2008 6:47 pm

    I made this Monday for my Dad’s 72nd birthday. It turned out wonderful and everyone raved about it! We could not stop eating this! Highly addictive and wonderful recipe. Thanks so much for sharing!!!!

    Denise Egan on 21 February 11th, 2009 5:52 pm

    Just finished making this… You’re right about the mess… Lots of chopping and splatter… but Yummm… I cant stop licking the bowl.. I cant wait to dress it tomorrow. I’m bringing it to my boyfriends work for Valentines Day.. I’m so excited about all the raves I’m about to recieve!! Thanks for the sharing this!