Request: EarthBound – Peanut Cheese Bar
I was pretty much oblivious to EarthBound until I was introduced to the curious character Ness in Super Smash Bros; having never owned a classic Nintendo console growing up I was subject to the gaming tastes of whoever owned the console I was playing (I was not beyond using a fellow classmate and neighbour to sate my need to play Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles). When I decided I was going to make this recipe I tried to source EarthBound from a friend who has an extensive retro games collection, but the fact he didn’t have it just instilled it’s cult status even more for me. However, I’m not without my EarthBound knowledge; I’ve read about it enough times in articles titled ‘gaming urban myths’ and ‘ultimate screwed up games’. Everyone kept asking for these Peanut Cheese Bars - I’d see the requests in my inbox and all I could imagine was some peanuts with cheddar cheese on top - melting and a little greasy… Then I remembered that cheese can be sweet and delicious too, I think the Mr. Saturns are definitely onto something!
This recipe makes 8 - 10 Peanut Cheese Bars.
What you will need: An 8x8 inch square spring-form or lose-base cake tin, a whisk, two mixing bowls, greaseproof/baking paper, cling film/saran wrap and a rolling pin.
For the Cookie Base:
175g / 1 ¾ Cups Flour
½ Teaspoon Baking Soda
½ Teaspoon Salt
110g / ½ Cup Butter (Softened)
85g / ¾ Cup Caster Sugar
85g / ¾ Cup Soft Brown Sugar
½ Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
For the Chocolate:
150g / 1 Cup Chocolate
55g / ¼ Cup Butter
40g / ¼ Cup Crushed Salted Peanuts
For the Peanut Cheese Topping:
225g / 1 Cup Cream Cheese
170g / 2/3 Cup Smooth Peanut Butter (Skippy)
100g / ¾ Cup Icing/Confectioners Sugar
120ml / ½ Cup Whipping Cream
Making the Cookie Base:
- Prepare the tin by greasing it with a little butter and lining the base and sides with greaseproof paper/baking parchment. Preheat the oven to 190C/370F.
- In a large bowl beat the butter, caster sugar and brown sugar together until creamy. Slowly add the egg and continue to mix.
- Gradually sift in the flour, baking soda and salt and mix well until a dough forms. If it’s very soft pop it in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
- Place the dough between two large sheets of cling film/saran wrap and roll the dough out to roughly fit the base of your prepared tray. Transfer it to the tray and lightly press it in until the entire base is covered and even.
- Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes until the edges are golden brown. Leave to cool while you prepare the chocolate layer.
Making the Chocolate Layer:
- Over a bain-marie melt the chocolate with the butter until smooth and shiny. Allow the mixture to cool slightly.
- Once cooled pour the chocolate over the cookie base and spread it out until even. Sprinkle over the crushed peanuts and with the back of a spoon, gently press them into the chocolate.
- Place in the fridge to chill for around 30 minutes while you prepare the peanut cheese topping.
Making the Peanut Cheese Topping:
- In a large bowl gently mix together the cream cheese, smooth peanut butter, sugar and cream. Once combined whisk it until pale and fluffy.
- Spoon the peanut cheese mixture over the now chilled chocolate layer and smooth it out.
- Sprinkle on top a few more crushed salted peanuts if you like, then place in the fridge for several hours until firm and chilled.
- Once chilled remove the combination from the tin carefully and cut it into bars.
Unfortunately there’s no available comparison image for this recipe! Do you have a picture of a Peanut Cheese Bar from EarthBound? If so, please send it to me!
When I say this recipe makes 8 - 10 Peanut Cheese Bars, what I really mean is it makes one awesome bar for one lucky person. Like me. Can I even describe how this tastes? Probably not. It’s the most incredibly crunchy, gooey, chocolately, salty and creamy combination. I played around with so many ideas in my head, swapping between a cheesecake, a more traditional sponge cake and even a pie. But I really wanted it to look and taste like something you might be able to buy in a wrapper in a shop. While my quest to find a copy of EarthBound to play continues, I certainly know what I’ll be gobbling when the time comes.