Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Best Ever Peanut Butter Cookies

When I was a youngster, we had a neighbor on our street that just loved to bake, and the best part about her baking was that she generously shared whatever came out of her oven with all the neighborhood children. On a very warm August morning I can recall the aroma drifting through her kitchen windows out onto the street where we played.
Oh my goodness, 'Mrs. Nelson's baking peanut butter cookies' we all howled. And we all knew it was only a matter of time before we got the call and she shared them with us with the iciest cold glass of milk I can recall drinking.

This was back in the days of fresh milk delivery. Do you recall those days? The milkman would deliver our milk and cream in glass bottles to our doorsteps. Well I remember them well, and every time I bake 'Florence's cookies' I think back on those days gone by with the fondest of memories. Just before she passed away I had asked her to share her cookie recipe with me, so that hopefully one day I could make them for my own children. And that I did.. always during the summer warmer months--mostly on days like today. Our children are up here on holiday, and what better cookie to make for them and share with you than Florence's Peanut Butter Cookies.

Rich smooth peanut butter is the base of this yummy cookie. Slightly crisp on the outside, but soft and chewy on the inside,with a nice peanut butter flavor. This one is a real winner!

Mrs. Nelson's Peanut Butter Cookies

1/2 cup white granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup softened room temperature butter
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
1 beaten egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, lighty sprayed or silpat. Bake these cookies on the middle shelf of your oven, and watch carefully. Bake cookies only 8-10 minutes.

Whisk together the flour and baking soda. With your mixer, beat the butter on medium speed for a minute or two, until smooth and creamy. Add the peanut butter and sugars and beat for another 3-4 minutes. Slowly add the beaten egg, and flavoring.. beating for another minute.

On low speed add the dry ingredients, scraping down the sides of the bowl, just until everything is moistened. Your dough will be soft and pliable. Pour the sugar into a small bowl. With a tablespoon, scoop out enough dough to form a two inch ball, and roll each formed ball into the sugar bowl, then place onto the cookie sheets. Dip the tines of a fork into the sugar and make a couple of crisscross impressions to each cookie top. This recipe yields approximately 36 cookies. Once they are all on cookie sheets, any remaining sugar in the bowl can be sprinkled over each.

Bake for 8-10 minutes, rotating the cookie sheets mid bake time. The cookies will be lightly colored, still a bit soft in the centers and just beginning to brown around the edges. Transfer to wire racks to cool and pour yourself a big cold glass of milk. Enjoy!

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