Ever wonder what happens when you move to China, don’t speak the language, and then contract a wicked virus like pneumonia? Yeah, neither did I.
But I can now tell you, because it happened to Other Half, and it wasn’t fun. At all. What started as an innocent cough, quickly escalated into some wild inflammation in the lungs, which led to weeks of exhaustion, a lot of missed classes and too many trips to a Chinese hospital to receive antibiotics via IV twice daily. Slowly, slowly he’s coming around to the healthy side of life, but with a too heavy work load, an environment that’s more polluted than the body is used to, it hasn’t been easy. What a trooper, he deserves a cake, no? Well lucky for him, not only did he pull through like a champ, he also had a birthday, which means double reason for cake! Yay!
Traditionally when it’s Other Half’s Birthday I would bake him up something gooey and sweet that involved chocolate and peanut butter. Without access to a proper oven, it was time to get creative. I still managed to pull off the gooey, the sweet, the peanut butter, and the chocolate with just a little ingenuity and some vague memories of no bake classics. After all, a Birthday isn’t a Birthday without some cake!
Cake is perhaps a bit of an overstatement here, it was really more of a… pie? Ish? It had two layers, that I know for sure, but neither of them were traditional cake, or pie. Working with what I had on hand and access to (which we know isn’t much) I sort of dreamed up this concoction and hoped for the best.
To start we have a layer of pseudo no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookie, and then we add a layer of whipped peanut butter creaminess. Combined it made a decadent, and rather delicious (if I do say so myself) Birthday treat.
If I were to make this again I would adjust a few amounts of certain things here and there (which is how I’m presenting the recipe below – adjustments made) as I found the bottom chocolate layer a bit too wet, and the top layer could have used a more traditional icing sugar (didn’t have).
At the very least, China is forcing some creativity out of me, and if the results are like this, then I'm not complaining!
Chocolate Peanut Butter "Pie"
all measurements are approximate as this was a very little-bit-of-this-little-bit-of-that recipe!
For the base:
1 1/2 cups of oats
1/4 cup of whipping cream
1/2 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup of sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup butter
For the topping:
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup of whipping cream
1/3 cup icing sugar
- In a saucepan over medium heat melt the butter and add in cream, sugar and vanilla
- Stir in cocoa powder, when combined, mix in oats and cook for a couple minutes until softened
- Pour mixture into a greased pie plate - spread evenly and place in refrigerator while preparing the topping
- In a medium bowl, using either a stand mixer or hand mixer, whip the cream and icing sugar until you have a light whipped cream texture (will take a few minutes)
- Fold in the peanut butter to the whipped cream mixture until fully combined
- Spread evenly over the base layer and refrigerate until both layers have set (about 1 hour)