Buckeye Candy, also known simply as Buckeyes, are similar to Peanut Butter Balls. Both are a round bonbon that have a smooth and creamy peanut butter filling encased in a coating of shiny dark chocolate. The difference between the two is that Buckeyes leave the top of each bonbon bare of chocolate, so the peanut butter filling can be seen. Buckeyes are so named because they look like the nut of the Buckeye tree, which just happens to be the State Tree of Ohio. So popular are Buckeyes in Ohio that they say an Ohio State versus Michigan football game wouldn’t be complete without this candy. A bit of trivia; the name “buckeye” comes from Native American folklore and is said to come from the fact that the Buckeye nut resembles the eye of a buck deer.
Buckeyes are a No Bake Confection. The filling ingredients are simply mixed together, rolled into small balls, chilled, and then dipped in melted chocolate. Once you roll the filling into round balls, they need to be chilled until firm. You can do this by placing the peanut butter balls in the refrigerator for several hours, or even overnight. But a faster way is to freeze them until firm (about 60 minutes). Freezing the peanut butter balls also makes it easier to dip them in the melted chocolate. You can use either semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate, or even a combination of semi sweet chocolate and milk chocolate. Since the Peanut Butter Balls need to be stored in the refrigerator, adding a little shortening to the melted chocolate keeps the chocolate nice and shiny. The peanut butter balls can be stored in the refrigerator for about 10 days, or they can be frozen.
Peanut butter is a smooth paste made from roasted peanuts. The peanuts are ground, and then salt, a sweetener, and sometimes a stabilizer (to keep the oil from separating) are added. Peanut butter that is labeled “Old-Fashioned” or “Natural” does not contain a stabilizer which means the peanut butter will separate and you will have to stir the peanut butter before using. You can use either type in this recipe.
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Article and Demonstration by Stephanie Jaworski
Photo and Videography by Rick Jaworski
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