I love anything bite sized, especially bite sized desserts because they always look so cute and are less filling at the end of a big meal. When I saw these Bite Sized Peanut Butter Pies with Chocolate Crust I had to make them: peanut butter and chocolate are a dessert heaven! The base of these mini pies is a delectable chocolate dough cut out in the shape of a flower then pressed into a mini muffin pan to create little pie crusts that house the creamy rich peanut butter filling.
The recipe calls for Cool Whip in the filling but I used real whipped cream instead. To top off the little pies I used chopped dry roasted peanuts and a sprinkle of sea salt with a dark bittersweet chocolate drizzle. Sweet and Salty, Chocolate and Peanut Butter: oh ya... here is how you can make your own.
You can find the entire recipe here. You will need an ungreased mini muffin pan to create the little chocolate crusts.
Crust: In a food processor pulse together the flour, sifted cocoa powder (I always sift cocoa powder as there are often little hard lumps that don't dissolve when baked), sugar and salt. Add the chilled butter and Crisco (I used Butter Flavor Crisco For Baking), pulsing until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Pulse in the egg yolks and then the iced coffee, a Tablespoon at a time, until a dough ball starts to form. You might not use all the coffee. When the dough comes together divide it into two flat discs, cover in plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes before rolling.
When the dough is chilled preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Roll out the dough until it is 1/8" thick. I roll my dough between two pieces of plastic wrap or parchment paper as this avoids having to use extra flour when rolling. At this point I like to freeze the rolled dough until it is stiff. This makes it much easier to cut out with the cookie cutter. Use a 3" wide flower cookie cutter to cut out the shapes. Press the flowers into the ungreased mini muffin pan and lightly prick the shell with a toothpick. Bake the shells for around 15 minutes, or until crisp. Allow the mini pie shells to cool completely in the pan before removing so that the shells keep their shape.
Filling: Beat the peanut butter with the cream cheese and vanilla until smooth. Beat in the powdered sugar until smooth. Fold in the whipped cream (or Cool Whip if you are using) until combined. Transfer filling into a piping bag with a round tip and pipe into the cooled pie shells.
Topping: Melt chocolate chips (I used chopped bittersweet chocolate) and shortening (I used a teaspoon of vegetable oil) in the microwave until smooth. Allow mixture to cool slightly then drizzle over filled pies. Top with a sprinkle of sea salt and chopped peanuts.