Wednesday, December 17, 2014

What's Baking: Peanut Butter Blossoms

Every Christmas, I bake up dozens of cookies. Most are given away to family and friends, but the ones that rarely leave our house are D's favorite peanut butter blossoms. I've made peanut butter blossoms before, but this time around I tried out a new recipe from America's Test Kitchen. This recipe includes ground peanuts in the dry ingredients, adding an additional roasted peanut flavor to the cookies.

I halved the original recipe, as I really don't need four dozen cookies lying around the house. (The original recipe states that it makes 96 cookies, but I'm calling shenanigans on that, as a halved recipe made 24 cookies, and my cookies were definitely already on the small side.)

Peanut Butter Blossoms (printer-friendly version)
makes 24 cookies

1 1/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, divided
1/2 cup dry-roasted salted peanuts
1⁄4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda
1⁄4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup (8 tablespoons/1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
24 Hershey’s Chocolate Kisses (from one 1-pound bag), wrappers removed

1. Add 1/2 cup flour and 1/2 cup peanuts to the bowl of a food processor and process until ground, about 15 one-second pulses. Add the peanut-flour mixture to a medium bowl. Stir in the remaining flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Whisk to combine.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the peanut butter and beat until combined. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract.
3. Reduce the speed to low and add in the flour mixture in two batches. Stir to combine.
4. Chill the dough in the refrigerator until firm, about 30 minutes.
5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat and set aside.
6. Roll the dough into one-inch balls and set two inches apart on the prepped baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 9-10 minutes, rotating the baking sheet 180 degrees halfway through the cooking period.
7. Remove the cookies from the oven and quickly press a chocolate candy into the center of each cookie. Return the baking sheet to the oven and bake for an additional 2 minutes, until the cookies are golden brown.
8. Remove from the oven and allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before placing the cookies on a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container.

(adapted from this America's Test Kitchen recipe)

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