Christmas is all about giving and sharing. And what's better to give and share than cookies? Every year around this time I find myself baking countless cookies for family, friends, and neighbors. I distribute a variety of cookies, but sometimes I get in a cookie rut and find it hard to make anything other than the usual: cut-out cookies, sugar cookies, peanut butter cookies, or shortbread cookies.
This year I created a new cookie recipe by accident. At first when testing this recipe I wasn't pleased with the results. But once I tasted it (and a few others did too and raved about them), I knew I had stumbled on something good. I didn't nearly discover penicillin, but what I got was a cookie that combined the best of a peanut butter cookie with that of a sugar cookie. This is not the typical dense, dry peanut butter cookie. Instead it's crisp and chewy.
The amount of sugar in this recipe makes the cookie batter spread on the baking pan like a sugar cookie, creating the crispy, chewy confection that can only be called scrumptious. The peanut butter, in this case chunky organic, lends great flavor and texture. These cookies were meant for sharing—that is if you don't end up eating them all yourself (they are that good!). Give them as gifts with a stack in a cellophane bag tied with a ribbon.
Peanut Butter Sugar Cookies
1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light-brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup organic chunky peanut butter
1 large egg
Whisk together dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, and baking powder to aerate.
In a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter until fluffy. Add sugars and salt; mix until combined. Add peanut butter and mix until combined. Add egg and beat until combined. On low speed, add dry ingredients, a little at a time, until combined. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
Using a 1-1/2-inch releasable scoop, form balls of dough and place no more than 8 on each baking sheet. Chill for 30 minutes. Bake in batches until cookies are spread, set in the center, and lightly brown around the edges, about 10 minutes. Yield: 28 cookies.