Peanut Butter Cake & Caramel Mascarpone Whip with Candied Peanuts Parfait



4 serving glasses, approx. 9.5 ounces each


For the Peanut Butter Cake:

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

¾ cup smooth peanut butter

¼ cup canola oil

1 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

¾ cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla


For the Candied Peanuts:

2 cups raw peanuts

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup water

Sea salt


For the Mascarpone Whip:

8 ounces mascarpone

¾ cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 tablespoons sugar

½ cup caramel sauce



To prepare the cake, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Grease an 8 x 4 inch loaf pan; set aside.


In a medium bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.


In the bowl of a stand up mixer, combine the peanut butter, oil, and sugar.  Mix until combined.  Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl after each addition.  Add the milk and vanilla and mix until well combined. 


Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients in two additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition.  Do not over mix.


Bake for 55-60 minutes.  If the loaf is browning too quickly, cover top with aluminum foil and bake until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Remove from oven and allow to cool in the pan for 10 minutes.  Remove loaf from tin and cool completely on wire rack.  Once cooled, take about half of the cake and cut in into ½ inch cubes.  *You will only need half of the cake for the recipe, depending on the size of your glasses.


To prepare the candied peanuts, add peanuts, sugar, and water to a wide heavy duty skillet.  Cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently until the liquids seizes up (about 5 minutes).


The sugar will start to crystalize on the peanuts, looking a bit crusty.  Lower the heat and scrape down the bottom of the pan once the sugar starts to melt and become syrupy.  Make sure to coat the peanuts well at this point.    If the pan starts to smoke, remove from heat and keep stirring.  Be sure to keep stirring the peanuts so they will be thoroughly coated with the sugar syrup.  Sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt and remove from heat.  Place peanuts on a cookie sheet or mat to cool.  *Peanuts can be made days ahead of time and store in an air-tight container for up to 7 days.


Just prior to assembly, prepare the caramel mascarpone whip.  Add the mascarpone and heavy cream to the bowl of a stand up mixer.  Beat on high until soft peaks form.  Add the vanilla, sugar, and caramel and continue to beat until the mixture thickens. 


To assemble, place 4-5 large cubes of cake in the bottom of the serving glass.  Top with a layer of the caramel sauce, making sure it reaches the sides of the glass so it will be noticeable throughout the layers. Next add a layer of the caramel mascarpone using the back of a spoon to create an even layer.  Continue with a layer of candied peanuts, cake, caramel, and another large dollop of the mascarpone whip.


Cover glasses with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.  Garnish with chopped candied peanuts and serve immediately.


candied peanut from David Lebovitz