Peanut butter cookies

Sometimes you find the tastiest recipes off packages in the baking aisle. These cookies were made from the directions on a bag of Hershey’s Chipits Reese peanut butter chips.

I’m enjoying a rare Saturday off and am having a lazy day. So lazy in fact, I was careless with dropping the dough on the tray and ended up with very flat cookies. Behold, peanut butter cookies made without peanut butter!

Time required: 1 hour

Yields: about 4 dozen small cookies

Total cost if you have none of the ingredients: $30

Cost per cookie: $0.63

Kitchen implements I used:

  • KitchenAid mixer
  • cookie tray

Ingredients:

  • 1 C butter, softened
  • 1 C golden brown sugar
  • ½ C granulated white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1½ TSP vanilla
  • 2 C flour
  • 1 TSP baking soda
  • ½ TSP salt
  • 300g package of Reese peanut butter chipits

1. Pre-heat oven to 190 °C / 375°F.

2. In mixer cream butter, brown sugar, and white sugar.

3. Beat in eggs and vanilla.

4. In a bowl combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add to wet mixture.

5. Add peanut butter chips, and drop onto cookie tray.

6. Bake around 10 minutes.

7. Cool cookies on pan (on a wire rack) for 2 min, before transferring cookies directly to wire rack.

Verdict: Not bad, but not the best peanut butter cookie I’ve eaten.

Playlist: howling cat

Cookieducken

Cookie! Cookie! baking hot
In the oven of my lot
With spatula in hand do I
Dare craft thy fearful deliciousness

My sister sent me a link called “love in pan”; a triple-threat of chocolate chip cookie dough, Reese’s peanut butter cups, and brownies. I am fundamentally opposed to using pre-made cookie dough but making everything from scratch would sort of the defeat the purpose of this near-instant cookie-thing, so I gave it a whirl.

Everybody in the grocery store was judging me as I filled my basket. It was awful.

Instructions:

1. Pre-heat oven to 176°C / 350°F.

2. Make brownie batter and set aside.

3. Slice chilled cookie dough and place into muffin tin (or if you’re like me and don’t own a muffin tin, use a cupcake tin).

4. Add the peanut butter cups upsidedown.

5. Cover with brownie batter.

6. Bake at least 18 min. (Mine were still raw at 18, baked another 5, then cooled 5 min in pan.)

Yikes. Are they supposed to look like inverted mushrooms? I pried them out of the pan and ate one.

Verdict: They were good, but eating more than one is probably hazardous to one’s health. I think you are supposed to either use a bigger pan, or less dough and batter.  Boyfriend assures me they are delicious. These were gigantic.

Playlist: 80’s

 

Milk chocolate Florentine cookies

I have no idea what a Florentine cookie is but I’m going to make them because I’m hardcore like that. Actually one reason I like making recipes I’ve never tried is there is no preconception of how the item should taste. I find that competing with nostalgia is often a quick road to disappointment.

Since I don’t know what to expect I’m going to treat this like a scientific experiment. I will need to:

  • ask a question
  • do background research
  • construct a hypothesis
  • test my hypothesis by running an experiment
  • analyze data and draw a conclusion
  • communicate your results

Notes related to the experiment will be written in red, like so.

Ask a question: what is a Florentine?

Do background research: I used my Google-Fu but was not enlightened. I have deduced that a Florentine is a flat, “Old World favourite”, sometimes made with cheap ingredients and sometimes jazzed up with lots of funky stuff, but mainly a sandwich-style cookie with a layer of something between the cookies. But that leaves a lot of room for interpretation. I remain confused.

Construct a hypothesis: If I follow the recipe in Chocolate 3 books in 1 by Nestlé, which is available on Amazon.com, I will make Florentine cookies, and I will know what they are.

(Mini book review: hard cover, sturdy ring binding, some good recipe ideas, lots of pictures, the majority of the recipes are contained on one page each which is always a plus. It contains contains Holiday ClassicsVery Best Baking, and Family Favorites. Cannot locate on on Amazon.ca)

Time required: 1 hr

Yields: supposedly 42 cookies

Cost per cookie: $1.24

Total cost if you have none of the ingredients: $34.00

Kitchen implements I used:

  • large cookie tray
  • tinfoil

Ingredients:

  •  ⅔ C butter, melted (10.6 TBSP)
  • 2 C quick oats
  • 1 C granulated white sugar
  • ⅔ C flour
  • ¼ C corn syrup
  • ½ C milk
  • 1 TSP vanilla extract
  • ¼ TSP salt
  • 1¾ C milk chocolate chips, melted

Test my hypothesis by doing an experiment:

1. Pre-heat oven to 190.5°C / 375°F. Line baking tray with tin foil.

2. Measure out and set aside:

  • wet mixture: milk, corn syrup, vanilla
  • dry mixture: combine in a medium bowl: oats, flour, sugar, and salt
  • chocolate chips (in a small microwave-safe bowl)

In retrospect I would have put the milk and corn syrup into one liquid measuring cup.

3. Melt butter in large pan and remove from heat.

(The vanilla was added here. I was not very efficient in making these.)

4. Stir wet mixture and dry mixture into the butter.

5. Drop cookies by using a level teaspoon onto foil, about 3 inches apart, and spread flat with a spatula.

Poor experiment control # 1: accidentally used tablespoon instead of teaspoon. Big cookies.

Hmm. Lots of goop. Not liking this so far.

6. Bake 6-8 minutes or until golden brown. I expected flat cookies since there is no leavening agent but I didn’t expect them to spread out into Mega-Cookie.

Perhaps it would have been smarter using a maximum of 2 cookies per row, teaspoon sized.

7. Cool cookies completely in pan on wire rack. Once cooled, remove from foil and flip upside down.

Poor experiment control # 2: a lot harder said than done, used a butter knife to pry them apart. Much cursing and shouting.

8. Melt chocolate chips by microwaving on High for 1 min or so, stirring until smooth.  Spread melted chocolate over half of the cookies (on the flat sides), then top with the remaining half of the cookies.

Poor experiment control # 3: didn’t want to eat a lot of cookies so returned most of the chocolate chips back in the container, and melted about ¼C. Am unable to comment on how these cookies taste the next day after the chocolate has set. This is bad science!!

Analyze your data and draw conclusions: I didn’t like these at all. They were very greasy, and the taste was nothing special. I used cheap vanilla extract but doubt my premium vanilla would have saved them.

I suspect Boyfriend didn’t like them either. He didn’t say, but normally he’s falling over himself to eat my cookies (naughty!), but not this time.

I made these because I’ve had a bottle of corn syrup for a year and done nothing with it, and I wanted to get rid of some ingredients in the pantry before Boyfriend has an apoplexy every time he opens it. “It’s bursting with stuff Patty, why do you need so much stuff??”

I’m looking forward to trying other recipes from this book though.

Conjecture:

  1. Is this really an “Old World favourite”? I am thinking no, not if it’s made like this.
  2. Suspect this recipe is loosely based off the idea of a traditional Florentine, whatever that is, but Americanized to utilize cheap ingredients and make it easier to produce. Hard to  imagine traditional Florentines contain corn syrup and quick oats.
  3. Suspect cookies from the Old World, like their architecture, is superior to modern ones. Suspect a traditional Florentine is probably delicious and nothing at all like this recipe.

Playlist: Ayashi no Ceres – OST

Communicate your results: and… publish!

Have you ever been disappointed by a new recipe?

Chocolate caramel cookie surprise!

How do you get the Caramilk Bar inside the cookie? Very, very carefully.

I spent today with my cousin J. She kindly provided a recipe for chocolate chip cookies, stuffed with Caramilk bar pieces. Intriguing!

It’s a cutout from a magazine and I’m not sure which magazine it’s from, and it turns out it was in a Longo’s flyer.

Tonight I made a beeline to the store to get Caramilk bars to try these out.

Good to know before you start: This dough is hard to handle.After the dough is prepared, but before the candy pieces are added, chill it in the fridge. I prepared an entire batch of dough but only baked 12 cookies tonight, and by the 9th cookie, as I was shaping it, it began to stick to my hands badly. I recommend baking them in small batches for this reason.

Time required: around 1 hr

Yields: around 36 cookies

Cost per cookies: $1.00

Total cost if you have none of the ingredients: $36.00

Kitchen implements I used:

  • large baking pan
  • parchment paper
  • mixer

Ingredients:

  • 1 C unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 C brown sugar, packed
  • ½ C granulated white sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temp
  • 1 TBSP vanilla
  • 3 C flour
  • ½ TSP baking powder
  • ½ TSP baking soda
  • ¼ TSP salt
  • 1 C milk chocolate chips
  • 4 Caramilk bars

Instructions:

1. Pre-heat oven to 177°C / 350°F, centre rack. Line baking tray with parchment paper.

2. In a mixer, beat butter until fluffy.

3. Add both sugars, beat until blended.

4. Beat in eggs, one at a time.

5. Add vanilla. Set mixture aside.

6. In a large bowl, whisk together: flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

7. Stir dry mixture into butter mixture, adding half at a time.

8. Stir in chocolate chips. Place mixture in the fridge for at least 10 min.

No pic for you!

9. Use knife to cut the Caramilk bars apart.

I will not eat the pieces, I will not eat the pieces. I will not, I will, I ... oops.

10. Scoop out dough with a table spoon, roll into a ball.  Make a small indent with your fingers, and place one square of Caramilk into the indentation. Pinch the dough up to cover the candy, and roll it through your hands again to smooth it out, then place on tray.

11. Bake 15 min. Cool in pan for 5 minutes before transferring to wire rack.

Cool on rack at least 2 min before eating.

Verdict: Stupendous! Loved this.

The dough is different from what I’m used to, it has a heavy, almost cake-like consistency, and the caramel centre is piping hot. And so good. They were much better than the cookies stuffed with Oreos.

I baked 12 and put the rest of the dough in the fridge. Together with Boyfriend and V we enjoyed them with milk. (These also dunk well!)

Both agreed “These are really good.”

Playlist: 80’s

Oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies

A few weeks ago I was googling… something, and found a recipe for a chocolate chip cookie, stuffed with an Oreo. Intriguing!

As far as I know, this idea originated on Picky Palate. I decided to stick with my own chocolate chip cookie recipe, and purchased a bag of double stuffed Oreos. (Purchasing factory-made cookies made me feel like a barbarian.)

Making them was fun, and they’re certainly monstrous:

I suspect these cookies might be very popular with the 4:20 crowd.

Not being part of that crowd myself, I was unmoved.

First bite after the cookie had cooled:

Verdict? Boyfriend thoroughly enjoyed them, and so did our friends. But personally I wasn’t wowed.

They certainly added something to my cookies but I’m not convinced that something was good. I’m glad I tried them but doubt I’ll make them again.

The warm creamy centre was tasty, but the Oreo wafer felt like an intrusion. Maybe twist the brown wafers off and just use the cream to stuff them?

Dunking them in milk was fun. It got me thinking of two future experiments:

  • FudgeeO stuffed double chocolate cookies
  • Pirate stuffed peanut butter cookies

Though I suspect turning either of those ideas into fruition would result in people being unable to poop for a week.