We woke up to -44° today.  Kiddo’s orchestra practice is cancelled at -40°, so today became a day of pajamas and video games. We took a time out to bake Kiddo’s favorite cookie.

20150207_152939With peanut butter cookies there are only a couple of variables. The biggest one, of course, is the peanut butter. If your peanut butter is blah when your cookies won’t have good flavor. Crunchy or smooth is entirely up to you; I love chunky peanut butter, but the boys prefer smooth (my goodness, they must be changelings!). To experiment with the sugar ratios or explore the effect of butter versus shortening, I highly recommend the chocolate chip cookie science over at Baker Bettie.

This is 12 recipe from my 1975 edition of the Joy of Cooking, which I’ve been using since I was 11 or 12 years old.

Peanut Butter Cookies

Preheat oven to 375°.

Beat until smooth:

  • 1/2 cup butter or shortening

Add gradually and blend until creamy:

  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

Beat in:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Sift before measuring and add:

  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Roll the dough int small balls.  Place them on a greased cookie sheet. Press flat with a fork.  Bake 10 to 12 minutes.

We used shortening and smooth peanut butter. to give them that classic peanut butter cookie look, dip a fork in flour and press it flat into the ball, then turn it 90 degrees and press it again to make a criss-cross pattern. I like to bake them on parchment paper, as they are so much easier to remove from the cookie sheet.