Special equipment: Medium mesh sieve Triple mesh sieve or a sifter Food processor to grind nuts, if using (If unavailable, place nuts in a heavy plastic bag and run a rolling pin or wine bottle over them to crush evenly.)
To prepare chocolate peanut butter mixture and chill: Heat cream with peanut butter in a 1quart heavy bottomed saucepan. Use a whisk to break up peanut butter so it melts evenly. Meanwhile, melt chocolate in the top of a double boiler over barely simmering water. When chocolate and peanut butter is smooth, combine with melted chocolate, using a whisk. Force through a mediummesh sieve into another bowl, using a rubber spatula. Stir in vanilla. Let cool, then cover and chill 2 to 4 hours (or overnight). To up to shape truffles: Whisk powdered sugar and cocoa together, then sift into another bowl to combine thoroughly. Grind peanuts, if using, in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Line a large baking sheet or tray with waxed paper or 30 to 50 1inch paper candy cups (yield will depend on the size of your scoop used to shape truffle). To shape truffles: If very chilled, let mixture sit out at room temperature for 20 minutes to soften slightly. Scoop out or spoon small portions of chilled filling and roll into a ball. If desired, push a "Goober" through the side, into center of round and roll to correct shape. Roll truffle in cocoa mixture or ground nuts and place in candy cups. Place in a decorative tin or gift box, separated by sheets of waxed paper or decorative foil. Keep chilled to maintain best flavor and texture.