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Peanut Butter Cookies at Christmas or Anytime

October 22, 2014

800px-Cookies_1Peanut butter cookies are a favorite any time of year but especially at Christmas. Many family favorite recipes involve peanut butter cookie recipes.

A favorite in ours is a basic recipe that can be varied. Mix together a half cup each softened utter and peanut butter then add a half cup flour, ½ cup packed brown sugar, an egg and ½ teaspoon each baking soda, baking powder and vanilla. Mix together thoroughly then add another cup of flour until well combined and easy to handle. Make into one inch balls, flattened with the tines of a fork gently. Bake at 375 for 7-9 minutes taking care to not burn the bottoms. Cool on wire racks.

Some variations can include substituting a half cup honey for the brown sugar, adding ¼ cup oatmeal or chocolate chips or butterscotch chips or chopped nuts. Another alternative is using chunky peanut butter instead of creamy. You can also vary by instead of flattening pressing an unwrapped chocolate kiss into each cookie. Another option is rolling each ball in sugar. This is a way to offer several varieties with the same basic recipe.

Still another variation is pressing a thumbprint into each cookie and using jam to fill the thumbprint after baking.

Another recipe is similar but the ingredients different amounts. Sift 2 ½ cups flour with a teaspoon baking soda and ½ teaspoon salt. In a large bowl combine ¾ cup butter and a cup packed brown sugar. Add a cup of chunky peanut butter, an egg and teaspoon vanilla. Combine the flour mixture with the peanut butter mix to make a stiff dough and put in refrigerator for a half hour. While chilling melt 6 ounces chocolate pieces with a teaspoon butter and let cool. Take your dough and divide in half. Roll into an 8×10 rectangle between two pieces of waxed paper and remove the top sheet to spread each with half of the chocolate mixture. From the long side roll each half tightly like a jelly roll, removing the waxed paper as you roll it up, and pressing the edges to seal. Wrap seam side down in plastic wrap at least 8 hours, but this can keep for a week to slice and bake as needed. Bake at 375 after cutting in ¼ inch slices- bake for 8 minutes or until light brown.

Both of these are an easy way to get a tasty peanutty treat for the holidays.

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