I’ve had the recipe book “Baked: New Frontiers in Baking” by Matt Lewis & Renato Poliafito for quite a while and have never gotten around to making anything from it, but tonight I finally made Peanut Butter Crispy Bars.
Although this recipe seemed really simple, it actually had a couple of things that tripped me up.
1. I’m really against using any corn syrup in my baking — I feel that the main point of baking at home is to make it a bit healthier and get rid of all those kinds of products. I’ve always wanted to try substituting Agave Nectar for corn syrup and I finally got the chance. The good news was that after it was done, I couldn’t taste the difference!
2. I didn’t realize that the recipe called for a candy thermometer and that I would need to get the syrup mixture to the “soft ball” stage. I’ve always run away from any recipes that call for this since I don’t have a candy thermometer and don’t know what the softball stage would look like. But, since I had already bought the ingredients and promised my husband a dessert, I looked up how to do it online and tried it out (I found a very simple explanation here). It wasn’t too bad, I just had to keep taking tiny bits of the syrup mixture and dropping them into a cup of cold water until it formed a small ball when dropped in.
The finished result tasted like a fancy, crispy, Reese’s Peanut Butter cup.