All the kids are back at school.
The weather is taking a turn, and the leaves are falling with an increasing frequency and fervor.
And with time on my hands and a sweater now wrapped over my shoulders, my thoughts naturally turn to baking.
And making fun after school treats — and drop-offs to friends I’ve barely seen all summer.
That’s where this cookie recipe comes in.
While cleaning out my sewing/craft room this week, I found a couple dozen cooking magazines I’d had for too long.
(Am I the only one that holds onto paper recipes with the thoughts that I’ll come back to them one day?)
Instead of recycling them all (or more likely tossing them back into the same corner), I thought I’d flip through them and see if anything jumped out.
I’m not sure my original reason for saving this magazine, but one recipe in particular stood out.
Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies.
Or what I thought they looked like — homemade Nutter Butters.
Do you remember them? I do.
My mom didn’t bake that much when I was growing up (an exception was her extraordinary ginger snaps, much like this recipe), but we always had either Oreos or Nutter Butters in the house for afterschool treats in giant jars on the counter.
I love sandwich cookies ( remember these homemade Oreos?),
so I thought I’d give this recipe a spin.
Here’s a quick game changer for me.
When baking, I used to either have to wait around for butter to come to room temperature or I’d get impatient and try to soften it in the microwave which usually ended up in a melted mess.
Then I read a recipe for pie dough that called for grating frozen butter and I thought that I’d try doing that.
It works so well –and I think I’m going to employ that trick going forward — the butter whips up the butter so well and so easily.
The cookie dough recipe is a cinch to whip up (and a little crumbly, think peanut butter shortbread-y)
and that frosting/cookie filling is dangerous — so creamy and delicious.
The recipe calls for shaping the cookies into logs which you freeze until they hold their shape and I love doing that as leftover dough doesn’t take up too much space in the freezer.
I wasn’t sure if I wanted to replicate the look of a Nutter Butter or just go for the regular rectangular shape so I experimented a little with texture on the outside.
The cookies cook up in just about 12 minutes; be sure not to overbake because you want a certain softness when you bite down so all that creamy filling doesn’t end up all over the floor.
On their own these rich peanut butter cookies would be tasty (especially when topped with flake sea salt)
but when they flank such a creamy, oozy goodness, these cookies are downright scrumptious.
Here’s what I call really risky behavior.
Making these cookies in an empty house.
I gobbled down two in seconds
and then left a handful in the fridge for the kids,
and then packaged up the rest to share with some friends.
Am I sad all those sweethearts are now gone from my counter and fridge?
Yes, but happy to remember more treasures await in the freezer for later enjoyment.
Any guesses as to who got my last bite?
Yep, my last kid who remains with me always, my faithful companion.
Happy Friday, people!
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ¼ tsp.salt
- 2 C. plus 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
- ½ C. (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 C. packed light brown sugar
- 1½ C. smooth peanut butter
- ½ C. whole milk
- ½ C. granulated sugar
- In a bowl, whisk together baking soda, salt and 2 C. of flour; set aside.
- In a large bowl, using an electric mixrer, beat butter, brown sugar, and 1 C. peanut butter until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg.
- With the mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture, beating just until combined.
- Form dough into 2 8-inch rectangular logs. Wrap each log in waxed or parchment paper; freeze until firm, about 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees with racks in the upper and lower thireds. WIth a sharp knife, slice dough ¼ inch thick; place on two baking sheets, 1 inch apart.
- Bake until cookies are puffed, 12 to 15 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Transfer to wire racks; let cool.
- Make filling: In a saucepan, whisk milk and 2 Tbs. flour over medium until thickened, about 2 minutes; let cool.
- In a bowl, using mixer, beat together ½ C. peanut butter and granulated sugar; beat in cooled milk mixture. Spread smooth sides of half the cookies with 1 Tbs filling; sandwich with remaining cookies.
- To store, keep in an airtight container, up to 5 days. (As if they'll last that long.)