Even though my mom makes about 30 varieties of cookies at Christmas time, and enough to fill her new personal deep freezer, my favorite one just happened to be the only one she was out of when I came home for Christmas. So being the needy younger sister and my mom being the most awesome mom ever, she made ANOTHER batch just for me. I helped of course.
I don't know if other people associate cookies with memories like I do (aside from the people in Tollhouse commercials), but my mom's peanut butter cookies hit a serious chord with me. The fork imprints and the baked in coat of granulated sugar can bring a vivid flashback to coming home from swim practice on a winter school night. I remember being that really good post-swimming sore with a wet head and seriously earned hunger, and walking in the house and smelling the peanut butter cookies baking. Yum.
The recipe I believe is more or less from the Better Homes cookbook, although I think my mom has modified it a bit over the years. I'll find out and let you know.
Oh, and one off-the-cuff tip from my mom that I am probably going to get in trouble for sharing:
"Cream the sh** out of the butter and sugar."
Peanut Butter Cookies like mom used to make
(Adapted from Better Home & Gardens)
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus additional for rolling dough
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together peanut butter and butter on on high for 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar and brown sugar and beat 3 to 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Turn down mixer speed down to low, beat in egg and vanilla, and mix until just combined.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt.
- Add the flour to the mixer bowl and beat on low speed until dough comes together in a single mass and flour is completely incorporated.
- Roll dough into a log, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate dough for about 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Using a sharp, thin knife, cut chilled dough into slices about 1/2 inch thick and dip one cut side of the dough in a bowl with the additional granulated sugar to coat. Place cookies, sugar side up, about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Flatten the cookies by making crisscross marks with fork tines.
- Bake for about 8 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned. Let cool on wire racks. Makes about 3 dozen cookies.