PB&C Cookies

Yield:12 very large cookies
I have been a fan of Scharffenberger chocolate for a while now and I've been to the factory several times as it's located in Berkeley, CA, an easy drive from where I live. I do like their chocolate best for baking. This recipe is adapted from their lovely cookbook, Essence of Chocolate: Recipes for Baking and Cooking with Fine Chocolate which contains lots of delicious-looking recipes by various chefs. However, once I tried this recipe I haven't made anything else from the book. Crunchy natural peanut butter is mixed with butter, vanilla, sugar, flour and other dry ingredients, eggs and some melted, unsweetened chocolate to form a very soft dough. Bittersweet chocolate chips are then folded in. The final result is a very soft, lightly peanut-buttery, lightly chocolate cookie with chunks of intense chocolate. Scrumptious! The recipe makes 12 very large peanut butter and chocolate cookies. I think this is the first time I've ever ended up with leftover batter after scooping out the required number what I thought were large cookies!

PBC Cookies
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt (may need to reduce depending on your pb's saltiness)
8 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temp
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter (natural preferred, with no added sugar or salt)
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, melted
1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips (or 6 oz chopped bittersweet chocolate)

1. Preheat the oven to 325° F and line two baking sheets with parchment or a silpat.

2. Melt the unsweetened chocolate.

3. In a mixer, combine the softened butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar and mix on medium speed to blend, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, egg and peanut butter and mix for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the melted chocolate and mix just until combined. Stop the mixer and add the dry ingredients. Mix just until combined.

4. Remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in the chocolate pieces by hand.

5. Drop large mounds of dough, about 3 heaping tablespoons each, onto the two prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly cracked on top, rotating the pans halfway through.

6. Remove from oven, cool 2 min on sheets, then transfer to a rack and cool completely.