Peanut Butter Cookies top my list when it comes to the ultimate comfort food. Firstly I LOVE peanut butter. It’s a fantastic ingredient that can be used in both sweet and savoury dishes, plus it makes a great snack food. ‘Four Ants on a Log‘ anyone? Celery filled with peanut butter and topped with 4 raisins – no? Okay, perhaps it was just a ‘family’ thing. In any case it’s a delicious and healthy snack that is fun for kids…and those of us who are still big kids at heart. Try it – you’ll love it!
Speaking of family, this is the other reason why peanut butter cookies are one of my favourite things. I have fond memories of my mum baking these delectable treats when I was young and of course I did my best to be a good baking assistant. However, I was quickly disabused of the notion that the most important task of a baking assistant is licking the spoon. Every time I make peanut butter cookies (and am tempted by the dough) I hear my mum holler“It’s got raw egg in it! Put that spoon in the sink!”
It’s amazing just how much raw batter you can slurp off a spoon on a 3 second journey to the sink. Of course I don’t recommend eating raw batter, but it as a child it was one of the delights of helping mum in the kitchen. While making these cookies it is possible some batter may have inadvertently made it’s way into mouth, but I am confessing nothing!
There are loads of different peanut butter cookies recipes out there but this one from Elise Bauer on Simply Recipes is one of my favourites. Easy to make and even easier to eat I can promise you that one cookie (even 2 or 3) won’t be enough!
1/2 cup butter, room temperature ( 1 stick / 4 ounces / 120g)
1/2 cup white granulated sugar (115g)
1/2 cup packed brown sugar (100g)
1/2 cup peanut butter (125g) I used crunchy peanut butter, but you can use smooth as well.
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour (150g)
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
NOTE: I realised I didn’t have any baking soda or baking powder so I left these out and the cookies were fine. I also added 1/2 Tablespoon of vanilla extract as I always remember my mum adding it to her mixture.
Beat the butter until creamy, approximately 2 minutes
Add white sugar and mix, then add brown sugar and mix together until well blended
Mix in the peanut butter and the lightly beaten egg
Vigorously whisk together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl (Note: as I only had the flour and salt I just added the dry ingredients directly into the bowl with the peanut butter mixture)
Once everything has been well blended the dough needs to be chilled for at least 3-hours. This makes it easier to handle. The original recipe suggests wrapping the dough in plastic / cling film however I just left it in the bowl and covered it with a pot lid
Preheat oven to 375° F / 190° C / Fan Assisted 170° C / Gas Mark 5
Shape the dough into balls roughly about 1 1/4 inch in size and place about 3 inches apart on a lined cookie sheet
Flatten in a crisscross pattern with a fork (Top Tip: My mum always placed the fork in a glass of warm water when making the pattern as it prevented the dough from sticking to the fork. Sadly this technique also gave me less dough to lick off the fork on my way to the sink)
Bake at 375° F / 190° C / Fan Assisted 170° C / Gas Mark 5 for about 9-10 minutes or until the cookies are light brown
Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the cookie sheet for at least a minute before removing to a cooling rack to cool completely
If you want chewier cookies Elise suggests baking them at 300° F / 150° C / Fan Assisted 130° C / Gas Mark 2 for 15 minutes
Ingredients at the ready
Creaming together the butter and sugar
I was excited by the new vanilla extract I bought. It has seeds and was thick, rich and syrupy
This is one spoon I can lick
Add the peanut butter and egg to the creamed sugar and butter
Add the dry ingredients and mix ‘vigorously’ – I find listening to Planet Rock at a ridiculously loud volume helps with this process
Mmmmm….cookie dough! Resistance is futile…(seriously though don’t lick the spoon!)
Shape into balls
The famous crisscross pattern
Dip the fork in a glass of warm water to keep the dough from sticking to it
Allow to cool
Perfect with a glass of milk