Sunday, December 2, 2012

Old-Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies

There's something just so marvelous about baking cookies in December while the Christmas tree lights cast a warm glow across the room.  This time of year certainly puts me in the baking mood.  In fact, cinnamon rolls, banana nut bread and perhaps another pecan pie are all in my very near future.

Baking simply makes my heart smile.  :)

Earlier today, my father-in-law mentioned that he had been craving peanut butter cookies.  Little did he know, that the little gears in my head quickly went to work, and a few hours later we were back at their house with a warm plate of these amazing cookies.  

And amazing they are...seriously.  I found a recipe from Bon Appetit magazine over on Epicurious that I tweaked here and there.  I added a little molasses and honey...and also substituted the vanilla extract with butter pecan extract instead. 

The results?  Pure fabulousness!

The molasses and honey made the cookies a little softer in the middle and perfectly crunchy around the edge (just how I like them!).  If you prefer a crunchier cookie altogether, leaving out the molasses and honey should do the trick.

This recipe makes about 3 - 4 dozen, depending on how large you make them.  If you don't need that many, you could easily halve the recipe or freeze the extra dough for later use.

Bon Appetit, my friends!! 

Old-Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies

3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup chunky peanut butter (do not use old-fashioned style or freshly ground)
2 teaspoons butter pecan extract (or vanilla)
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs

1/4 cup molasses
1 Tbsp honey

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Mix flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter, peanut butter and vanilla in large bowl until well blended. Beat in both sugars. Add molasses and honey, mixing until well combined.  Scrape down sides of bowl. Stir half of dry ingredients into mixture. Add eggs 1 at a time, stirring well after each addition. Mix in remaining dry ingredients. 

For each cookie, roll 1 heaping tablespoonful of dough into 1 3/4-inch-diameter ball. Arrange dough balls 2 1/2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Using back of fork, flatten dough balls and form crosshatch design on tops. Bake cookies until dry on top and golden brown on bottom, about 14 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheets 5 minutes. Using metal spatula, transfer cookies to racks and cool completely. (Can be prepared up to 3 days ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature.) 

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Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog said...

Yum!! I love peanut butter cookies - can't wait to try this recipe.

Kim, Living to Seas the Moment said...

These look delish! I happen to love Peanut Butter cookies and would like to try this recipe. Just curious, what is chunky peanut butter? I have only seen creamy or crunchy in our local markets. What brand do you use?

Thanks for sharing...I can't wait to bake a batch!