Fancy Peanut Butter Rum Balls

  • Serves: Makes 4 dozen 3/4-inch balls
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  • Comments: 1

Christmas would not be complete without no bake Peanut Butter Rum Balls. Regular ones are too dull, so I like to dress mine up with all kinds of add-ins. I like to dip mine in chocolate or you can optionally roll them in large sanding sugar crystals for fun. Just place on a sheet pan and freeze until hard, then place into a resealable plastic bag and remove the ones you need to dip. Let them come to room temperature before dipping or the coating can crack when it chills too fast.
COOKIE RECIPE HELP

Sarah's
Secrets

I like to roast my peanuts for more flavor! For lightly roasted peanuts, lightly toss chopped peanuts with a tiny amount of water and spread in a thin layer on a microwaveable baking dish. Microwave on HIGH at 50% power in 30- to 60-second increments, stirring after each session, until lightly browned. Take care not to overdo it. Peanuts will be crisp when cool. Let cool before using in the recipe.

INGREDIENTS
1 cup (2 sticks or 16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/3 cup dark brown sugar, packed or regular sugar
2 tablespoons rum or 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon orange peel, finely chopped, optional
1/4 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted; measure and then sift
2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 cup packaged coconut (sweetened or unsweetened), shredded or flaked
3/4 cup finely chopped peanuts; chop and then measure. Chop by quickly pulsing in a food processor until finely chopped, taking care not to make peanut butter. Measure 3/4 cup. 

two 11.5 or 12-ounce bags (4 cups) semisweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons shortening, optional

INSTRUCTIONS
1. Line a couple of large rimmed baking sheets with parchment or waxed paper. Set aside.

2. In large bowl, combine the butter, peanut butter, dark brown sugar, rum, orange peel and salt. With a large spoon, mix the ingredients until well-combined and smooth.

3. Slowly work in the powdered sugar and graham cracker crumbs. Then, add the flaked coconut and chopped peanuts and mix until well blended. This will be a very stiff mixture and you want it evenly mixed. At this point, you may need to work the end amounts in by hand.
SARAH SAYS: I use my hands to combine the ingredients together. Make sure you reach into the bottom of the bowl and toss all of the ingredients together.

3. Shape dough into 3/4-inch balls and place on the prepared baking sheet. The balls can be placed close together.
SARAH SAYS: Optionally chill the balls for an hour or overnight before dipping in chocolate. Let them come to room temperature before dipping or the coating can crack when it chills too fast.

4. In a metal bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water melt the chocolate chips and optional shortening, stirring until the mixture is smooth. Let the chocolate mixture cool. Dip the balls into the chocolate mixture with a fork, coating them well and letting the excess drip off. Transfer them as they are coated back to the parchment paper lined baking sheet, and chill them, covered loosely, for at least 1 hour or overnight. (The balls may be double-dipped if desired.)
SARAH SAYS: The best way to coat "candy" centers is in tempered real chocolate.  

OPTIONAL
After shaping the balls, immediately roll into sanding sugar or extra granulated sugar. Place in airtight container lined with waxed paper and refrigerate.

STORAGE
Store chocolate covered balls in an airtight container in airtight container for about 3 days before serving.
Longer storage for several days to a week or more, in between sheets of parchment or waxed paper, in a cool, dry place.

The uncoated balls freeze well. Just place on a sheet pan and freeze until hard, then place into a reseable bag or an airtight container, between pieces of wax paper. Remove the ones you need to dip. Let them come to room temperature before dipping or the coating can crack when it chills too fast.

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