Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Food can be a powerful thing. I’ve said it before and I believe it–food connects us. Sometimes it’s a simple ingredient, a subtle flavor, or just an aroma that can remind us of someone or something special. Food can trigger memories and bring you back to a specific time or a place within seconds. I think that’s a remarkable thing. Chocolate peanut butter cups have become one of those foods for me.

chocolate peanut butter cups

As a kid, I was not a peanut butter fan. I never ate it because it was simply too sweet. Later in life, I learned to tolerate this iconic American spread, but only when needed. But my love and connection to peanut butter came much more recently–a few summers ago when I lost one of my closest college friends. Losing Dana, changed everything. Her passing was, and still is, difficult to accept. But Dana (who was truly brilliant), always taught me things and challenged me to see things differently. So naturally, she taught me something in her passing.

chocolate peanut butter cups

Lesson Learned

What I learned (in addition to the fact that cucumber slices DO NOT reduce eye puffiness from crying…) was that you can be friends with someone for decades, know their passions, fears, failures, and many of the little idiosyncrasies that make them who they are, and still not know everything about them. You see Dana loved Reese’s peanut butter cups, and I had no clue. Looking back, I can say I do know a tremendous amount about my friend; the good, the bad, and the ugly, but I did not know about her peanut butter cup obsession.

chocolate peanut butter cups

At Dana’s memorial service, her love of peanut butter cups was highlighted by both her parents and her three younger sisters. At the reception afterward, there was a huge container filled to the brim with Reese’s peanut butter cups that family and friends indulged in while sharing Dana’s stories. I was surprisingly comforted by this.

Chocolate peanut butter cups symbolized a lot to me that day; a sweet life, my friend’s playful demeanor, joy, and simplicity, but most of all it taught me that no matter how well you know someone, there is always something more you can learn about them–even if it’s something simple, like this.

chocolate peanut butter cups

A few years have passed since losing Dana, and to honor her I developed my recipe for chocolate peanut butter cups to help strengthen that food connection even more. Now, whenever I make these or even pass by the candy-packed store shelves around Halloween time, I am reminded of my wickedly funny, amazing friend I was so fortunate to have known.  So thank you D for yet another lesson learned.

In loving memory of Dana Camilla Hoelter, July 28, 1973-July 28, 2018.

About the Author

Andrea Potischman

I am a professionally trained NYC chef turned CA mom and food blogger. I post about real food, with doable ingredient lists that are family friendly.

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