Let me break this down for you: peanut butter melt-away cookies smeared with jam, and layered between peanut butter mousse. Oh, and whipped cream and crushed peanuts, all packed up in a portable jar for the perfect picnic. Not that you have to go on a picnic to enjoy these—we ate these on the couch. Silently. Except for the moaning. Each bite of peanut butter mousse elicited a moan.
Lest you think we are lazy and eat on the couch all the time (we do), I’ll mention that we ate these after returning from our nightly walk. Nightly, as in we’ve done it twice and if I call it ‘nightly’ the habit will surely stick. Actually, I know the habit will stick because Mr. Dessert For Two carries around a glass of wine during our walks. Can you imagine what our neighbors think when they see us? Me, personally? I won’t walk around carrying wine. I’m a lady. BUT, I will walk around the neighborhood carrying a jar of this peanut butter and jelly dessert. And I’ll do it proudly. Because these jars are cute.
I adapted my lemon melt-away cookies recipe to make these peanut butter meltaways. When I rolled the cookie dough into a log, I used the bottom of the jars as my guide for the diameter. I wanted the cookies to fit easily into the jars. If your cookies don’t fit, or if you’re using store-bought, just break them to fit.
It’s okay if you want to be like us. If you want to walk around your neighborhood carrying jars of peanut butter mousse, go ahead. We’re the cool kids. Just trust me on this. Don’t ask my neighbors…
Peanut Butter Mousse and Jelly Parfait
Makes 2 8-ounce jars.
For the peanut butter meltaways:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons peanut butter*
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup flour
2 teaspoons cornstarch
pinch of salt
For the peanut butter mousse:
2 tablespoons peanut butter
3 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
For the rest:
1/3 cup of your favorite jam
a few tablespoons crushed peanuts
First, make the cookies: In a medium bowl, stir together with a wooden spoon the butter and peanut butter. When the mixture is completely homogenous, add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Stir well. Finaly, sprinkle in the flour, cornstarch and salt. Stir until just combined. Scoop the dough onto a piece of wax paper or parchment paper. Gather it into a log that is the diameter of the glass jars you are using. Wrap it tightly, and store it in the fridge at least 1 hour, or overnight.
When ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350. Slice the cookies into 6 even pieces, lay them on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Let cool on the sheet 2 minutes before removing. Let cool completely.
Next, make the peanut butter mousse. In a small bowl, beat together the peanut butter and cream cheese. In a different bowl, whip the cream. Add the powdered sugar once soft peaks form. Beat until combined.
Stir half of the cream mixture into the peanut butter and cream cheese mixture. Reserve the remaining whipped cream for topping the desserts. Refrigerate the mousse until very cold, about 1 hour.
Assembly: Have ready 2 8-oz. jars (or something similar). Spread a cookie with jam, and drop it into the bottom of each jar. Add a scoop of peanut butter mousse. Repeat twice. Top with the remaining whipped cream and crushed peanuts.
The cookies are soft, so you shouldn't have to let the dessert set for too long. They didn't last longer than a day in my house!
Disclosure: Freund container provided me with the jars for this recipe.
Christina Lane is the author of 3 cookbooks all about cooking and baking for two. She has scaled down hundreds of recipes into smaller servings so you can enjoy your favorite dishes without the leftovers! Valentine's Day is her favorite holiday.