When I encountered the recipe for Dulce de Leche Cheesecake bars in last month's issue of Bon Appetit, my eyes got really big and I think I probably said something like "Whoa".
After a brief moment of despair at having no graham crackers or cream cheese in the house, I found myself wondering "could this work with peanut butter and Reese's Puffs cereal instead?". And so I made said substitutions, and found myself with a pretty tasty treat. They could have chilled longer to set, but friends had no problem dealing with the dulce de leche ooze.
Dulce de Leche Peanut Butter Chocolate Bars
- Nonstick vegetable oil spray
- 2 1/4 cups finely ground Reese's Puffs cereal
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 16-ounce jar peanut butter (preferably smooth, full-fat)
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup purchased dulce de leche
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup purchased dulce de leche
- 3 tablespoons (or more) heavy whipping cream
- (optional) a spoonful of hot fudge sauce
- Make the Crust. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat 13x9x2-inch metal baking pan with nonstick spray (I used an 8x8-inch pan for fat, thick bars). Mix cereal crumbs, sugar, and cinnamon in medium bowl. Add melted butter; stir until coated. Transfer crumb mixture to pan. Press evenly onto bottom of pan. Bake until crust is light golden, about 10 minutes. Cool completely on rack.
- Make the Filling. Blend peanut butter and sugar in a stand mixer until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs 1 at a time, processing 3 to 5 seconds to blend between additions. Add dulce de leche and vanilla; process until blended, about 10 seconds. Spread batter evenly over cooled crust. Bake until just set in center and edges are puffed and slightly cracked, about 38 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool completely.
- Make the Glaze. Heat dulce de leche, 3 tablespoons cream and chocolate sauce (if using) in microwave-safe bowl in 10-second intervals until melted. Stir to blend, adding more cream by teaspoonfuls if too thick to pour (amount of cream needed will depend on brand of dulce de leche). Pour glaze over cooled baked mixture; spread evenly. Refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour (glaze will not be firm). Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover; keep chilled. Sprinkle bars with fleur de sel.