Saturday, February 6, 2010

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

As I said, I did a lot of baking this week!

On our trip, Brian and I went to this little diner in Fort Lauderdale for lunch when we got back to the states. We ordered two shakes, one of which was a peanut butter chocolate banana shake – and boy, was that shake delicious! We drank both shakes (and ate a full meal) until we felt sick, but we couldn’t stop drinking the peanut butter one because it was so good. The result was that we felt sick for the next few hours and we couldn’t eat dinner that night, but it was worth it.

Since we have returned home, I have been longing to capture the flavor of our trip – literally. So, I cooked up a recipe for peanut butter cookies that is inspired in part by cookies Brian’s mom makes for Christmas every year, and in part by the epic milkshake. I tried everything I could to make these the most delicious, most peanut-buttery, most chocolatey cookies ever and I think I succeeded.

If you love peanut butter, try out this recipe. The recipe makes a few dozen cookies, so I suggest making them at a time when you are prepared to give some away. Otherwise, like me, you will eat too many every day. Send them to work with your spouse/partner, send them to school with your kids for Valentine’s Day, bring them to a party, package them up for neighbors, or just make a few and freeze the batter in little balls covered in parchment paper for whenever you get a craving. They are so delicious!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

1 cup + 2 TBS peanut butter (I used regular creamy Jiff)
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar + 3/4 cup sugar, separated (the 1/4 cup is for the batter, the 3/4 cup is for rolling dough balls)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
2 TBS milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup peanut butter chips (I got the Reese’s brand and they were delicious)
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. (I do this to save clean-up. You can probably use a greased cookie sheet if you have no parchment paper.)
3. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the peanut butter and butter. Once combined beat in the 1/4 cup sugar, and the brown sugar until well blended.
4. Beat in the egg, milk, and vanilla.
5. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt and gently add to creamed mixture and mix until almost combined. (I say almost combined, but really, if you combine it all the way that is fine too, but just be sure to lightly flour the chips before you put them in the batter so they don't sink to the bottom of the cookie.)
6. Fold in chocolate and peanut butter chips.
7. Chill dough for at least 15 minutes.
8. Roll tablespoonfuls of dough into balls. Gently roll the dough balls into sugar and place dough balls on parchment lined baking sheets. Carefully press each ball with a fork to create the classic criss-cross pattern.
9. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are lightly browned.
10. Remove from oven and cool on baking sheets for 5-10 minutes until sturdy enough to be transferred to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes: Chilling the dough before making them into balls is key -- if the dough is room temperature, the dough balls fall apart when you press the fork into them. Also, definitely make sure you wait to remove these from the oven when you see they are a little bit browned on the edges. I took out one batch a bit too early, and they were very, very soft and didn’t preserve well because they got gooey in the zip lock bag. Finally, to freeze the dough balls simply portion out the dough balls in a Tupperware and cover each layer with parchment paper. Be sure to place parchment paper on top of the top layer so that icicles don’t form on your dough. Cover and freeze and use whenever you want some fresh baked treats!

(Next time, to make these even more chocolatey, I may instead of doing the classic criss-cross, make the dough balls and then press them down in the center with my thumb. I would bake them as usual and when I pull them out of the oven, I would push a Hershey kiss in the center. Yum! If anyone tries this let me know!)

1 comment:

  1. I'd gladly take some of these off your hands, but I doubt I'll be doing any baking of my own! Not for lack of skill, of course, but... ok yeah, lack of skill.