I'm not much for candy making. It's a precise science--and one that I'm not very fabulous at. But for peanut butter and chocolate, I make an exception. Being from Ohio, I have a special place in my heart for Buckeyes. Not only do I love some Ohio State football, but if I'm at a party and there are these perfect treats out, you can bet your bottom dollar I'll be indulging. In Ohio, there are numerous culinary schools where you can learn the precise skill of candy making.
These are not difficult to put together, but they do take some time. I actually propped open a book to read while I was rolling all of the balls of filling. :) I also picked up a few tips and tricks from the issues I had the first time through. I believe freezing the filling will do two things--1) keep the toothpick in more firmly. and 2) prevent the warm chocolate from melting it. If you can insert the toothpick in the side of the ball and cover the hole with the chocolate, you can avoid that little toothpick hole in the top of the buckeye.
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1-1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
4 cups confectioners' (powdered) sugar
1 pkg (12 oz) semi sweet chocolate chips (2 cups)
1 Tbsp shortening
Cream butter, peanut butter and vanilla together adding confectioners' sugar until proper consistency is reached. Filling should be slightly dry and crumbly, but able to hold together after pressing together in the palms of your hands. Roll candy into 1 inch balls and place on cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Place in the freezer while you melt the chocolate (30 minutes would be optimal.)
Create a double boiler by filling a 2 quart sauce pan with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil. Place a heat resistant glass mixing bowl (1.5 qt) into the sauce pan (the bowl should not touch the water.) Pour in chocolate and shortening and stir occasionally until melted. Turn the burner down to low.
Remove the peanut butter balls from the freezer. Using a toothpick stuck into the side of each ball dip into the chocolate, leaving a dime sized portion of filling exposed (mimicking the look of a buckeye nut.) Carefully remove the toothpick. Coat all of the candy balls and return cookie sheet to the freezer for an hour or more.
Store in an airtight container