The last instalment of Christmas baking in our house also saw the creation of some cookies Jeanne had brought to the cookie swap we had at the beginning of December. My daughter loves everything involving peanut butter and insisted that we make some, despite the fact that our cookie jars were already overflowing with Christmas biscuits and my parents were bound to send another helping as well. I played along, on the condition that she would be responsible for the baking, which really wasn't much of a problem, except for the fact that I had to convert from American cup measures again and improvise a bit since we had none of the peanut butter chips the recipe suggested... but I am happy to report that adding chopped peanuts works just as well - they might not be just as gooey as Jeanne's version, ressembling a digestive biscuit more than an American cookie in consistency, but they tasted utterly delicious nevertheless. The best thing about the recipe is that it can easily be prepared by kids - no kneading, no rolling pin involved, no cookie cutters needed and they're ready in a flash... easy-peasy Christmas baking this is!
With Austrian baking predominantly using walnuts and hazelnuts, the peanuts are a welcome flavour addition to our cookie plate... and it seems that Father Christmas was quite partial to them, too, as he gobbled them up leaving no trace of them but a few crumbs scattered over the lounge table!
Double peanut butter cookies*
(makes about 40)
200 g plain flour
¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp table salt
125 g butter** (softened)
140 g peanut butter (I used the chunky variety)
120 g granulated sugar
90 g light brown sugar
1 large egg (beaten)
60 g roughly chopped peanuts
Pre-heat oven to 180 C.
Combine dry ingredients in a bowl, slowly whisk in butter, peanut butter and egg.
Form balls of about 2.5 cm diameter, placing them 5 cm apart on a non-stick baking tray or a buttered baking sheet.
Using the back of a fork dipped in caster sugar, gently press down on the balls twice, in a criss-cross fashion, to a height of about 5 mm.
Transfer to the oven, baking for 8-10 minutes - they should not get too brown.
Leave to cool on a wire rack and store in an air-tight container thereafter.
* Based on a recipe provided by Jeanne of Cook Sister!
** The original recipe suggests 62.5 g butter and 62.5 g vegetable shortening, which I didn't have at hand.