Yesterday I had E’s help playing along with me in the Short & Sweet baking challenge which you can join in with any time. Read more about shortandtweet here on Evidence Matters’s tumblr blog.
She is a good sport, not only did she do the washing up, but she made these fantastic peanut butter cookies ! She even watched benignly while I tweeted away as we baked.
I blame my butterfly attention for the misreading the temperature for the bake for the first lot, but I pulled them out when I realised they had been in the oven on fan instead of conventional at the hotter temperature. They survived, but if you are after a soft chewy cookie, follow the times and temps exactly. I like them crunchy so I was fine!
Having said that, what a great recipe! Even Brian, who hates peanut butter with a vengeance, ate two of them and said they were good. I only have unsweetened crunchy peanut butter in the house so I don’t know what they would be like with a sweeter butter. See how neat and tidy E is, look at those perfect balls of cookie dough!
The original version of the recipe can still be found on the Guardian website here. We added extra chopped up roasted (unsalted) peanuts to the mix, one of the suggestions in Short & Sweet and had a lot of consultation with Evidence as to shaping and flattening of balls of dough to achieve different sizes and textures of cookie on Twitter.
If I was going to do the topping with choc chips again, I think I would need to make a bigger dent and really pile them in, they looked a bit sparse on the finished cookie. I quite fancy buying some of those exotic nut butters that I see sometimes in whole food shops and seeing if you can make a hazelnut version or an almond one. I am sure it would work.
I also finally used the fancy Professional (!!) Baking Sheet that Tutak brought me back from New York. Thank you Tutak! Now if I could persuade you to eat one of these – but I think you are another hater of peanut butter.
Bottom line : these are great, make them! There are only two left because he who doesn’t like peanut butter has scoffed them down. I am going to make these again though, definitely.
We also made the toffee apple buns from Short & Sweet, lots of work involved. The buns are huge, wrap your chops round one of those and you couldn’t eat much else the rest of the day!
I cheated in various ways. I used frozen apples from the freezer and I experimented with a bottle of French caramel sauce which I had bought ages ago meaning to make creme caramel with it. I used walnuts instead of pecans.
Here are a couple of photos. The tin is the collapsible Silverwood one that usually only comes out for making big cakes. 30 cm square at its biggest as here. I am not very fond of it as it tends to fall apart as you move it in and out of the oven. If you make this recipe think laterally about what tin to use, maybe a rectangle, make smaller buns, that sort of thing…
Good work with the buns too – I’ve read that recipe and decided it looked like bit of a faff for not really a lot of buns, but maybe I’ll give it a go now.
Thank you! They are very big buns, so I figure that one could either make a longer roll and cut more and smaller buns say a dozen, that is what I would be comfortable eating. I think they are ‘man-sized’ buns if that makes sense. 10 cm wide each one.
They both look good- I like anything some one else has made.
And I love baking with a friend- especially when THEY clean up afterward.
We had a lovely time, I was very impressed that she ‘dived’ into the sink too ;)
I was looking at the recipe for the peanut butter cookies just yesterday and thinking I must make them soon! I LOVED peanut butter as a child, it was a real treat at the time, just after the war, loved it on hot toast Yours look very good and so do the buns, haven’t looked at that recipe yet…….
Make the cookies Jeannette, they are really good and quite straightforward. I have to make some more soon :)
Great looking biscuits and fabulous looking buns too. A bounty of baking. I do really want to try those biscuits but just didn’t get round to it yesterday. The buns look mighty indeed – I often find Dan’s recipes too big for me and am getting to be quite efficient at scaling recipes – either to make less in total, or to divide them into smaller pieces. When these were on the S&S choices I was contemplating making them but using raisins instead of the nuts – different texture, but I reckoned it would still go with the caramelly apple – what do you think?
I am sure you can customise the dough to suit your preferences. It is a very soft and loose dough but that’s often the sort of dough you get from one of Dan’s recipes so I keep faith and don’t add more flour. I think raisins in there would be fine :)
They certainly are big buns! Although they do look tasty.
I like these peanut butter cookies too, although I can’t make them at the moment, as FB has a peanut allergy..
That’s a shame about the cookies, but it is a very common allergy. I don’t have any but Brian has a couple and they do affect what you choose to cook, don’t they?
That’s not cheating, that’s being innovative! Love the PB cookies, although my Pete won’t eat them either. Big Boy might though.. :)
It was being frugal and lazy both, a win win combo! I had the sauce and I didn’t feel like making caramel. As to the cookies, Brian was caught chomping away today and I said plaintively, ‘But you don’t really like them!’ And he just carried on …. What am I supposed to do?
Make some more?
Great Minds Think Alike :D :D
What beautiful looking golden buns. And the peanut butter cookies look very delicious and I like the addition of the chocolate drops. My mother used to make peanut butter cookies when I was growing up. She went to the USA for a holiday and returned with the recipe. I must ask her if she still has it xx
That would be interesting to see her recipe and if it is different from this one. A while back I made some cookies with peanuts in which were drenched with icing sugar before baking, and it sort of spread and crackled – they looked very pretty when they were freshly baked.
You had me at bakes, and peanut butter and chocolate, and cookies! Now if I can just get my hands on a jar of peanut butter life would be great! We are going into the city today and Ill have a look, I must make these cookies!
Hi! How sweet of you to visit me back :) I don’t make a lot of cookies as I always think they are a bit of a faff and don’t come from a cookie baking family tradition, but I hope you like these if you track down a jar !
Oh, Im the cookie monster. If and when I make them Ill let you know!
I went through the list of S&T choices for the week with P, and the poor man was crestfallen. He sighed and thought it better to avoid temptation with cookies in the house. He loves them. Loved, rather. Sweetener just doesn’t work well with cookies. I’ll wait for better options and then join in for the bake, unless it’s the last two weeks of May when I’ll be playing with Emma and Ethan. :D
This is the first one I’ve joined in with for a while, that’s the pleasure of this enterprise, you can just do what you feel like and suits you both :)
I’m still hoping to join in on a few Mellow Bakers breads. Where is all my time going?!
You have a couple of years to do Mellow Bakers breads ;)
That’s good to know! :D
Love it all!! Photos.. recipes! Those buns.. oh, they are so sticky and sweet looking for my morning coffee.. I wish, I really wish…
There is something very Canadian/North American about these cookies Smidge, growing up in England the biscuits that we usually had were bought ones, either McVities dark chocolate digestives (special treat) or ginger nuts, occasionally we had shortbread, and I still remember my first packet of Maryland cookies with chocolate chips and thinking they were quite wonderful! Oh and those spicy papperkake, thin spicy snappy Danish Christmas biscuits. That was the repertoire of biscuits here. Nothing like Canada and the US!
I only had one of the buns in the end, some went home with E and some went to Mitch and her fry. Brian is still (!) baking hot cross buns, only minus the crosses as we have a jar of spiced syrup in the fridge with which to anoint them and he has got the hang of making them and he thinks they are so easy to put together.
I really enjoyed the baking experience – so much better baking with someone rather than on one’s own. I also have to say that J is the best teacher I have ever had – so patient and encouraging. The cookies have now all gone except 3 which I managed to save for my husband when he gets back from Finland. My youngest loved them and has made me promise to bake them again. She wasn’t so keen on the buns though I have to say.
Nothing for it but we are going to have to make more…. :) Thanks for the lovely comment Elaine !
Because I love your recipes and pictures, I nominated your blog for the ABC Award: http://thenorthwardroute.wordpress.com/2012/04/25/awards/. Have a nice day, and please keep posting pictures of the adorable Zeb :)
Thank you Jennifer that’s very kind of you, I am glad you like Zeb :)
Me again! I made the Peanut Butter cookies this morning, great success! I included some chopped peanuts in mine as I am a nutty person. The window-cleaners liked them too!
Excellent, a happy window cleaner is always a good idea :)
I’m so pleased that you had such a convivial experience baking these peanut butter cookies. I’ve borrowed your photographs for the Short and Tweet compilation for this week’s challenge: Short and Tweet: Cookies, oatcakes, sweet or savoury biscuits.
We like pressing them while hot because we can press them out thin and bake up crisp biscuits or we can make them thicker and more like a cookie. We always add the extra chopped peanuts to the mix. We bake them so regularly that much as we’d like them with chocolate chips it’s probably just as well if we don’t acquire the taste for them.
I’m not surprised to learn from E that J is a good teacher :)
I’m rattling my ingredients and waiting for lessons from you :)
Y U M !
Double Yum – one for you to try I reckon :)
Just back from Finland yesterday and really enjoyed your peanut cookies!
I was surprised at the focus in Finland on rye bread – started with the plane where we were offered ham & cheese sandwiches with one slice of white and one slice of rye in the same sandwich – most bizarre. Then in trips around all the educational and managment facilities for the week there was always a wide range of rye bread on offer at breakfast, lunch and dinner:
– hard breads almost like ryvita
– fairly thick or thin breads both round and oblong
– a variety of lighter breads
– rye breads with fruit options
I was even tld there were rye bread options in McDonalds
Looking back now on Google clearly rye bread is very important to the Finns and certainly their culture.
They also love liquourice – but with a Finnsh touch – their sweets very often conatin liquorice plus salt – not on the outside but within the mix – an acquired taste I have to say. They also had liquorice vodka – a speciality again – no real immediate “hit” and a consistency of penecillian – something else I will not be taking up regulairly.
Any way thanks for the cookies via E and will be eating toffee and apple bun
Hi Kevin! Sounds like you had an interesting trip. Yes, rye is much more common and everyday in Finland and Scandinavia and consequently there is more variety and choice in styles of bread. I love the idea of McD’s having rye options, presumably they try and blend their golden arches in in their quest for world domination ;)
My hommage to Finnish bread is in an old post I wrote called Piima Bread for Moomins, which featured a rye bread made with grains soaked in piima yoghurt, from a Finnish yoghurt culture.
As to liquorice, salt, menthol, mixed with ammonium chloride, I drool just thinking of it and I should have begged you to put a little in your bag for me. I grew up eating loads of it, though some of the really salty stuff I wasn’t keen on. Penicillin liquorice vodka is new on me, though I have had liquorice ice cream.
Lovely to hear from you, hope to see you and E soon – all best wishes, Joanna
I made both your rye grain bread and peanut butter cookies yesterday; love both!
With the cookies I used the large end of a parisian baller to make the indent for the chocolate chips, I topped up with extra chocolate chips when they came out of the oven while the cookes were still hot and they all melted together.
I thought I would try hazelnut butter and roasted hazeluts next time.
Thanks so much for the wonderful recipes.
Hello Elaine – hey that’s great that they worked for you – I love Dan Lepard’s peanut biscuit recipe and coincidentally I found some hazelnut butter in a speciality shop and was thinking to try that too. Topping up with extra chips while hot sounds like an excellent idea :)