Back in November I checked out the Momofuku Milk Bar cookbook from the library. I made a couple of the recipes, but it proved to be a popular library book and I was not able to renew it. Since there were cookie recipes I still wanted to make, I put the book on hold and just recently was able to check it out again.
This time, I decided to try making peanut butter cookies. Like many of the recipes in this book, this one required making another recipe first. In this case, the recipe within a recipe was for peanut brittle. The brittle is good by itself, but I really do like it inside the cookie so it’s worth the extra trouble. These peanut butter cookies have a crispy edge and a softer center and a nice peanut flavor. The peanut brittle makes beautiful brown speckles in the cookies and adds a slight crunch. These are definitely elegant looking peanut butter cookies and if you can bear to part with them, they’d make good gifts.
- For the Peanut Brittle:
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup peanuts (skinned, blanched, unsalted and unroasted is preferred)
- For the Peanut Butter Cookies:
- 12 Tbsp. (170g) unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1½ cups (300g) sugar
- 2 Tbsp. corn syrup (or ¼ cup glucose)
- 1 cup (260g) Skippy peanut butter
- 2 eggs
- ⅛ tsp. vanilla
- 1⅓ cups (225g) flour
- ½ tsp. baking powder
- ⅛ tsp. baking soda
- ½ tsp. Kosher salt
- Peanut Brittle, ground or chopped into the size of short-grain rice.
- Make the brittle:
- Line a sheet pan with a Silpat (parchment supposedly won't work for this). Make a dry caramel by heating the sugar in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat. As soon as the sugar starts to melt, use a heatproof spatula to move it constantly around the pan so that it melts evenly. Cook and stir until the caramel is a deep, dark amber, about 3 - 5 minutes. Once the caramel has reached the target color, take it off the heat and quickly stir in the peanuts. Once they are completely covered in sugar, pour them out onto the Silpat and spread as thinly as possible. It will set very quickly. Let it cool completely and then break up the brittle into pieces the size of short-grain rice.
- Make the cookies:
- Combine the butter, sugar and corn syrup in the bowl of a stand mixer. Cream with the paddle attachment on medium-high for 2 - 3 minutes. Scrape the bowl. Paddle in the peanut butter, then add the eggs and vanilla and beat for 30 seconds on medium-high. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then beat on medium-high for 3 minutes.
- Reduce the speed to low and add the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix just until the dough comes together, no longer than 1 minute. Scrape down the bowl.
- Still on low, mix in the peanut brittle just until incorporated.
- Using a ⅓ cup measure or an ice cream scoop, portion the dough onto a parchment lined sheet. Pat the tops of the cookie dough flat. Wrap the pan in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours or for up to 1 week. Do not bake the cookies at room temperature or they will not bake properly!
- Heat the oven to 375F.
- Arrange the chilled dough a minimum of 4 inches apart on a parchment or Silpat lined pans. Bake for 18 minutes. The cookies will puff and spread. After 18 minutes, they should be tan with auburn specks.
- Cool the cookies completely on the pans before transferring to a plate or container.
I didn't have plain nuts to use, just salted and roasted ones. This didn't seem to harm the cookie recipe but the salt should be reduced slightly in the cookies to compensate for the saltier brittle.