Saturday, 21 January 2012

A Peanut Butter & Brownie 9 Layer Trifle!! and the end of exams!

I am writing this blog post and it feels so good not be doing it sneakily! I'm officially allowed to look at cupcakes and my google reader and blog as much as I like because I am done with exams! Hooray (yes my husband does have to monitor my every internet move because if he didn't I would spend all day looking at cupcakes rather than looking at experimental validity!)

As a consequence of said exams and essays, I am wayyy behind in blogging, how inconvenient of them to get in the way right?! So I bring you the dessert that I made for our Christmas Day feast! In my family growing up, probably like most other English families, we had Trifle on Christmas Day - which is great if you like custard and cream but I don't! My mom used to make me my own special little trifle in a bowl sans custard and cream! 

This year we spent Christmas Day at my mother-in-laws and I offered to make the dessert.  I still wanted to keep it somewhat traditional so stuck with trifle...but as my husbands family are all peanut butter lovers and mine are not I decided it was my chance to unleash this 9 layer beast on them, courtesy of Paula Deen!

Although it seems like it should take alot of preparation, it really didn't.  My husband helped me make it on Christmas Eve and between the two of us it had been whipped up and left to set in the fridge within an hour.  Easy peasy...and for the delicious results it was definitely worth it.  I had never tried Jell-o pudding mix before and was a little skeptical but once you whipped the peanut butter into it it became a creamy peanut butter flavoured dream! Combine that with moist fudgy brownie, bites of peanut butter cups covered in chocolate, a taste of peanut butter frosting and some sour cream and whipped cream to cut through the richness and you're talking about one mouth watering dessert!

This dish was a little pricey to make, I had been in London the day before to source the Jell-o vanilla pudding, peanut butter cups and peanut butter chips from Partridge's because you can't buy those ingredients at regular supermarkets here. So, unless you're happy to spend more on making a dessert than you would on a meal out, it might be best to save it for a special occasion! but if you live in America and those ingredients are freely available on your supermarket shelves then bake away!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Brownie Trifle
Makes 12-15 servings

1 (17.6-ounce) package brownie mix, prepared according to package directions, and cut into small squares
2 (3.4-ounce) packages instant vanilla pudding mix
3 cups whole milk
1 2⁄3 cups creamy peanut butter, divided
1⁄2 cup butter, softened
2 cups icing sugar, divided
4 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
1 1⁄2 cups sour cream
1⁄2 cup caster sugar
2 cups double cream
15 chocolate peanut butter cups, cut into fourths
Garnish: chocolate peanut butter cup bells and peanut butter chips (melted)

For pudding layer:

In a medium bowl, combine pudding mix and milk, whisking until combined. Whisk in 2⁄3 cup peanut butter; set aside.
For peanut butter layer:
In a large bowl, combine remaining 1 cup peanut butter and butter. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add 1 1⁄2 cups icing sugar and 2 1⁄2 teaspoons vanilla, beating until well blended; set aside.

For sour cream layer:

In a small bowl, combine sour cream, 1⁄2 cup caster sugar, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Stir until well combined; set aside.

For whipped cream layer:

In a large bowl, combine cream, remaining 1⁄2 cup icing sugar, and remaining 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Set aside.

To assemble trifle:

In a trifle dish, place 1⁄3 of brownies in bottom of dish. Spread 1⁄2 of pudding mixture over brownies. Top with 1⁄3 of brownies. Spread peanut butter layer over brownies. Sprinkle with peanut butter cups. Spread sour cream layer over peanut butter cups. Top with remaining 1⁄3 of brownies. Spread remaining 1⁄2 of pudding mixture over brownies. Top with whipped cream. Garnish with peanut butter cups, if desired and drizzle with melted peanut butter chips.

As there were only 4 of us sharing this dessert on Christmas day we had tons left over! It is super rich so small portions are the key! So on boxing day I took the rest of it up to my family, remember the family who don't like peanut butter, and let's just say this dessert changed their mind! Now both sides of my family are peanut butter lovers! 


  1. Sounds so rich but delicious! Every time I come over to your blog it reminds me I want to try something with peanut butter!

  2. Congratulations on the end of your exams!! I can totally relate to the relief. I am a huge fan of peanut butter so I will definitely LOVE this. I can't wait to stock up on supplies when I go to US next month!! Enjoy your freedom and look forward to more fabulous baking from you :)

  3. What a lovely feeling to have finished the end of your exams- and to get back to baking! This sounds such a delicious festive treat, I'm sure it must have been a huge hit!

  4. Oh my word! That looks AMAZING! I want to dive right in. COngratulations on finishing your exams, that must be a huge relief

  5. This trifle sounds extremely yummy!
    You must be baking like crazy now that you're done with your exams ;-D Enjoy!

  6. Stumbled across your blog via Kells Kitchen. :) And I love it! The design, the recipes, the pictures, and your lovely green KitchenAid (I have one in pink). :)
    Keep up the good work, you have a new follower. :)



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