Wednesday, December 23, 2009

December 24th- Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk

Holiday grocery shopping is wild, I know I am not alone here. I was grocery shopping yesterday at two busy markets. I entered the colorful produce section where I loaded fruits and vegetables into my cart. The crowd was on that same mission I was, excited to be shopping for one or two holiday dinners. My menus were not finalized, I was going to plan one of my menus while being inspired at the market. The next thing I know, I pilled all my produce and more on top of my grocery list. Accepting that it is way too late to get it now, I continue on, winging it. You must understand I grocery shop everyday. My grandmother makes fun of me because every time I call her I am on my way to the grocery store. We do tons of cooking and eating that it becomes too much to plan all the time. Besides, I like our food fresh. I had no special orders unlike most at the market, picking up large pieces of meat and so on. Me, I knew what I needed would be in stock because I was not cooking a traditional holiday meal. More to come about our holiday menus.

Cookie talk- Freshly ground peanut butter and dark chocolate just love each other. This recipe originated from a wonderful article in the New York Times last week. The story was about weddings in Pittsburg that have elaborate cookie tables. A relative is in charge of the cookie organizing while family and friends make tons of cookies for the special day. Up to 2000 cookies will be displayed at the wedding party. Click here to read more.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk
Makes about three dozen

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Nonstick spray or vegetable oil for cookie sheet, optional
3/4 cup chocolate chunks
Sanding sugar for rolling the cookies

1. Using an electric mixer, cream together butter, peanut butter, granulated sugar and light brown sugar. Add egg, milk and vanilla; beat until well blended. Gradually add dry ingredients, mixing thoroughly. If the dough is very soft, refrigerate for about 1 hour.
2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or silpats and set aside. Roll dough into 1-inch balls.
3. Roll cookies in sanding sugar and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Bake until very light brown and puffed, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove sheet tray from oven. Using a wine cork make a indent into the center of each cookie, allowing it to crack slightly, and add about 5 chocolate chunks to the cookie center (filling up the holes). Return to oven until light golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from oven, cool completely and store in an airtight container.

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