i opened up my facebook account a few days ago to see the following written on my page from my brand-spanking-new (shiny even) sister-in-law.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies. That is all.
now if you knew her, you'd know that she's the type of gal that isn't afraid to let people know what she likes and has the spunk to go after it. that's my kinda girl! so when i read this, i really only had one option. make this girl some cookies here in tennessee and ship them to her cookie-craving self in florida.
homemade cookies haven't graced my kitchen counters yet and i was more than happy to change that fact for her. she is family after all. to the internet library of baking i went and luckily ran across the most adorable food blog that is now saved in my top sites, smittenkitchen.com. there, i found this recipe for some of the best peanut butter cookies you could ever hope to have melt in your mouth. now i know why she calls her kitchen smitten.
Peanut Butter Cookies
Adapted from the Magnolia Bakery Cookbook
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup peanut butter at room temperature (smooth is what we used, but I am pretty sure they use chunky at the bakery)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
1/2 cup chocolate chips
For sprinkling: 1 tablespoon sugar, regular or superfine
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the flour, the baking soda, the baking powder, and the salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and the peanut butter together until fluffy. Add the sugars and beat until smooth. Add the egg and mix well. Add the milk and the vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and beat thoroughly. Stir in the peanut butter and chocolate chips. Place sprinkling sugar — the remaining tablespoon — on a plate. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls into the sugar, then onto ungreased cookie sheets, leaving several inches between for expansion. Using a fork, lightly indent with a crisss-cross pattern (I used the back of a small offset spatula to keep it smooth on top), but do not overly flatten cookies. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Do not overbake. Cookies may appear to be underdone, but they are not.
Cool the cookies on the sheets for 1 minute, then remove to a rack to cool completely.
compared to some of the recent yummies i've made, the recipe looked simple enough. i hadn't really considered how many cookies it would make, but surely thought i'd get enough to ship my sis-in-law a dozen. i tied my apron around me, got out my entourage of baking utensils and got right to work. on my drive home from work, i'd felt myself tensing up with things on my mind. not to mention, i hadn't been to the gym in weeks and had promised myself i was going. that's never something i exactly look forward to doing.
however, the moment i got to work mixing, measuring, making ingredients play nicely together, i felt a calmness wash over me. people talk about getting into the zone and baking has allowed me to understand that sentiment. in my opinion, family should be a source of comfort and our safe havens. i smiled to myself when i realized baking these cookies for my new sis was doing just that. without even having her standing in the kitchen with me, making these for her gave me all the warm fuzzies i needed to massage the tension out of my shoulders.
once all the ingredients were combined and ready to bake, i started scooping out heaping teaspoonfuls onto the waxed paper cookie sheet. my hope that i would have enough to send her a dozen multiplied when i realized i hadn't even made a dent in the batter after the first round were quietly baking away. all in all, there was enough to make five dozen! to be fair to my waist line, i only made four and froze the remaining batter for a rainy day.
now before you start worrying about me scarfing down the remaining three dozen cookies, let me explain. my husband started his brand new eye ball internships this same day and i left him a plate with a little note to come home to while i was at the gym. then, i packed up the rest to share with my memphis friends and co-workers. they all thank my sil, i'm sure, for expressing her cookie desires. while now you may be worrying about me not eating these sugar dusted delights at all, fear not. there's some on my kitchen counter right now with my name on them, just waiting for a cold glass of milk.
dearest new sis, please enjoy your surprise in the mail and i hope these are what you had in mind (and tummy) when you wrote that facebook statement. for you, i would do just about anything. xoxo