So, I'm not in the habit of posting recipes as I don't really fancy myself a cook but I sure do love making cookies or, more specifically, experimenting with cookies. My latest tinkering in the lab has resulted in some seriously tasty NomNoms, so I decided to share. Note: If you are an experienced cook and/or blog recipe reader/writer, please bear with me as I am none of those things!
It all started with Trader Joe’s Easy Melt Baking Chocolate.
What I wanted was a chocolate chip peanut butter cookie but I'm avoiding soy lately which means avoiding chocolate since almost all chocolate contains soy. However, Trader Joe's baking chocolate does not. However however, baking chocolate is not sweet. Hence I was faced with a task: How to make my baking chocolate nice and sweet like milk chocolate?
Lucky for me, my husband found a recipe on eHow but I don't have the link anymore, but here it is plus a few tweaks of my own at the end for flavor. Note: It was meant to be eventually hardened to cut up for chips but that never happened, the hardening, I mean, thus why I went with a "fudge drop" cookie.
- 1 package Trader Joe’s Easy Melt Baking Chocolate
- 14 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 cup milk (this is where I'm not vegan I cook with milk, eggs & butter)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon raw agave syrup (add more or less to taste)
- 3 packets Stevia (again add more or less to taste)
Note: Since we don't have a double boiler, we just used a small saucepan and metal mixing bowl, hence these instructions will be as thus.
Bring water to boil, make sure mixing bowl does not touch boiling water, add chocolate. Wait until the chocolate is totally melted before adding all the other ingredients. Stir in all the other ingredients except the stevia and agave unless you totally trust me then go on with ya bad self.
Once it's all stirred and melty, give it a taste. WAIT! Before you do it's gonna be crazy hot so, like, don't burn yourself then come sue me. I don't have any money anyway. Ok, so, after you've let a spoonful properly cool and what not, take a taste. You may think it's perfect. I wanted it sweeter but I did not want to add more sugar so I added the super sweet raw agave syrup and Stevia. I found a Tablespoon of agave and 3 packets of the stevia worked perfectly for me, but you may prefer a different combo.
Once you've perfected the flavor for ya own taste buds, you can turn off that stove top and set the fudge aside.
Note: we were hoping to harden the chocolate so we put it into smaller glass containers that we then covered and stuck in the freezer. It did not harden. We waited overnight. Nada. Point is, you don't need to do all that, but you may want to stick it in the fridge just to give it some thickness for later.Now on to the cookies!!!!!
I got the base recipe for the peanut butter cookies from a random blog when I Googled "peanut butter cookies" awhile ago whilst visiting my Dad in Florida (I signed myself up to make all the cookies for a party there... 200 cookies! I was on my feet all day cooking cookies. Anyhoo...they were tasty!). Here is that recipe plus my own additions and notes.
PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES
- 1 large egg (I was scarred as a child by an egg with a partially formed baby chick inside so I never use eggs, instead I used 1/4 cup ReddiEgg)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (this last time I used 1/2 Trader Joe's Organic Brown Sugar instead of just white or raw and it was way better)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter (I prefer Trader Joe's Creamy Salted Peanut Butter but Crunchy works, too)
- 1/2 teaspoon Mexican vanilla (I just use any old vanilla I have and it's been perfectly fine)
- 1/3 cup chopped peanuts, to taste (I recently used mixed nuts and really dug that, added another layer to the flavor to have almonds, cashews, etc mixed in)
- 1 scoop protein powder (I add this for cookie 'body' and protein but you don't need it)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl, beat together egg, sugar, baking soda and vanilla. I use my husband and a wooden spoon for this, but if you have an electric mixer that isn't broken (like me) then you'll probably want to go ahead and use that. Or a whisk, I guess. (I don't have one of those anymore either. It rusted.) Mix in the peanut butter and protein powder. Stir in the chopped nuts.
Now, at this point, if you used oily peanut butter from your cupboard like me, you may want to stick your dough in the fridge for a couple minutes just to firm it up a little but you don't need to. I didn't this last time, but I admit I think I like how they turned out before when the dough was a little firmer, but, meh, whatev. A cookie is a cookie is a cookie. They are still so delicious I have to force myself to not just eat them all in one sitting.
Ok, so, now I use my actual teaspoon to scoop out perfect little balls of dough. I definitely use heaping spoonfuls, though, which yields less total cookies, but I think makes for a better sized cookie, especially when you're adding fudge drops which, omg yes, we are!
Now would be a good time to go get your fudge. It's ok. I'll wait. No, go.
*tap, tap, tap*
Ok, good, you're back. I was getting worried. Did you have to pee? Maybe you should wash your hands.
So, now, take your teaspoon, scoop out balls of dough and place them in little rows on your cookie sheet, y'know, not too close together, use your best judgement.
If you let your dough firm up a bit in the fridge, take the bottom of your teaspoon and use it to make little divets, indentations if you will, in the center of each cookie. This is where you'll drop the fudge.
Now, I use a 1/2 teaspoon to scoop out little balls of fudge to then drop on each cookie but this is CRAZY messy. I highly recommend using one of those cake icing squishy things. I need to get myself one. What the heck are they called? Anyway...
Put a dollop of fudge on each cookie.
Now, if you want to get totally crazy with the cheese whiz you can like totally add a mini marshmallow to each cookie if you want. It's pretty good, but I won't lie, the cookie doesn't need a garnish. It's crazy good on its own. I just think it's fun to dress up a cookie every now and then.
Bake for 10 minutes.
Voila! You now have super yummy peanut butter fudge drop nomnoms. Eat and enjoy!
Note: please let cookie cool before nomming. That fudge gets like napalm it's so hot. Y'know, like when you burn the roof of your mouth on hot pizza? Yeah. So, cool on cooling rack first! Then eat & enjoy!
PS: I edited the ingredients slightly. Forgot I used half sugar/half brown sugar combo not just all brown sugar. Also, if you actually try this recipe, which, of course, I hope you do, or I wouldn't have posted it here in the first place, I'd love for you to come on back and post a comment on how it turned out for you - good or bad - and if you have suggestions or substitutions (For example, how would a vegan alter the recipe? I'm seriously curious!). All comments are moderated, prior to posting, so only I will read it first, not the whole world, in case you just want to tell me & not have it posted for others. Also, you can post anonymously. Thanks for reading!