Peanut butter cookies—using natural peanut butter? Whaa?

You ever have those days when your clothes are fitting just right, maybe even a little loose and you’re pretty happy with the way you have been not having seconds at meals and have passed on the breads and had been drinking loads of water? Then a cold rainy day comes and your find yourself munching on toast with honey, cashew brittle and popcorn. What happened? An alien invasion of your food habits, that’s what! In about 2 days those clothes are going to be tight again and its back to ground zero.

But of course, this never happens to me. (She says wiping brittle off her chin and popcorn butter off her fingers before typing.)

Now, on to cookies.

I have always-always heard not to use natural peanut butter when making peanut butter cookies. It was too runny, it would make the cookies spread too much, etc.

Taboo.

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And I’m not really the taboo-breaking rebel you think I am. It’s just a persona I use.

But then one day my dh went and bought a double pack, mind you, of Costco sized all natural peanut butter. Whats a baker to do?

So I looked up recipes for peanut butter cookies using natural peanut butter and found out people have been secretly and stubbornly using this for quite a while.

I found this recipe by L.V. Anderson and it looked perfect. I just add a dollop of molasses for an extra kick and top with crushed peanuts before putting my traditional sugared-up hash marks on top.

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So here it is for you, although personally, I double the recipe.

Peanut Butter Cookies using natural peanut butter
Yield: About 24 cookies
Time: About 3 hours, mostly unattended

1 cup brown sugar
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
½ cup creamy natural peanut butter
1 large egg
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
1½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar, or more as needed for coating the cookies

1. Beat the brown sugar, butter, and peanut butter with the paddle attachment of a stand mixer (or with a handheld mixer in a large bowl) until light and fluffy. Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract and beat to combine. Add the flour, baking soda, and salt, and stir just until combined. Wrap the dough in foil or plastic wrap (or simply cover the bowl) and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.

2. Heat the oven to 350°F. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls, coat each ball in sugar*, and transfer to a baking sheet, leaving 2 inches between cookies. Press the tines of a fork flat against each ball of dough to indent it, then make a second indentation perpendicular to the first one. Bake until the cookies are firm and their edges are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheets, then transfer the cookies to wire racks or paper towels to finish cooling. Repeat with the remaining dough. Serve immediately, or store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a few days.

*at this point I just pressed top into some crushed up peanuts, then did the fork thing.

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