Friday, February 12, 2010

Taste of Home: Peanut Butter Cookies

When I lived in Spain, the only peanut butter was called "Capitan Cacahuete" (Captain Peanut) and I might just as easily have been buying plague butter for all the help I got in finding it and eating it. I suppose Europeans look on peanut butter a bit like Americans look on the Australian marmite (EEEEEEWWWWWW, no offense). Never, in my happy tours through bakeries in upwards of a dozen European countries, have I seen a peanut butter cookie.

Maybe that's why I wanted to make them last night. In just eight days, we'll be heading back to the U.S. for interviews in California, and my mind seems to hop back and forth across the ocean four or five times a day right now. There are approximately 27 things I can't wait to do. But eating peanut butter cookies isn't one of them, because I made them last night, and since then I've eaten 5.

Peanut Butter Cookies
Adapted from The Road to Blue Ribbon Baking

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
1 TBSP vanilla
3 TBSP milk
1 egg
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking soda
granulated sugar for dipping (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Cream together butter and peanut butter. Beat in sugar until light and fluffy. Add milk and egg and blend well.

2. In another bowl, combine flour, salt, and baking soda. Stir into the main bowl.

3. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.

4. Roll dough into 1 inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar if you wish. Place in rows on ungreased (or lined) cookie sheets. Press with a fork one way and the other way to make the usual peanut butter cookie lined pattern.

5. Bake 10-12 minutes until golden brown. If you wish, press squares of white or milk chocolate into the center of each cookie as soon as you take them out. Or, as pictured, press white chocolate and, after a short interval, milk chocolate for a pretty framed effect.

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