Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies!!!

COOKIES!! If you are imagining me saying that in Cookie Monster-esque tones, then you are bang-on my friend! There is little else in the world that offers such a simple pleasure as a chocolate chip cookie. It speaks of the Americanisation of my generation that these, for me, are definitely cookies and not biscuits. Nope, when it comes to a crispy, chewy, chunky, chocolately something to have with a tall glass of milk, it’s a cookie or bust. And these particular cookies have shot straight to the top of my list of must-have kitchen munchables. I have searched through many a box of bikkies and a stack of recipes to track down the cookie of my memory, but alas, until now, it had been to no avail.
This cookie has it all. It is everything I wanted my cookie to be…and then nothing more than that. Let me explain; this cookie is not filled with pop rocks. It is not weighed down with more chocolate chips than a nestle factory. It is not coated in fleur de sel, or himalayan mountain salt (though that stuff is pretty cool). And it has not been injected with helium gas. No. It is simply a cookie. A chewy, peanutty, slightly salty, dark chocolate chip-smattered, perfect for sticking into a bowl of ice-cream, cookie. This cookie represents all that is pure and good in the world. (slight exaggeration) It is a shining beacon of hope for all of the people out there lost in a sea of overly complex recipes, with patently ridiculous ingredients lists, or weird dietetic substitutions. Xanthan gum biscuit anyone? Evaporated cane syrup beverage? Of course not! We just wanted a cookie dammit!
Simple, straight forward, and soul satisfying. Made from real butter, real organic eggs, real un-bleached flour and real vanilla. That’s what you want when snack time rolls around. There is a reason that an entire monster was created in devotion to the cookie – he’s a smart guy. The old C-man could teach us all a thing or two about following our hearts and our stomach’s towards what we really want. And he can teach us about the alphabet as well. He really has his stuff together. So take a leaf out the of the Cookie Monster’s book, and bake a batch of cookies, you know you want to. It’s so wholesome. Don’t add agar agar, or rice gluten. Save them for when the next series of MasterChef starts. Today, be the person who’s house smells like freshly baked cookies, but strangely there aren’t any around, because she ate them all when they were still warm out of the oven.
That’s ok.
Just make another batch.


Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Baking: From my home to yours by Dorie Greenspan, Houghton Mifflin, 2006.
75g Butter, salted or unsalted, at room temp
1/4 cup of Peanut Butter
1/2 cup Caster Sugar
1/3 cup of Brown Sugar
2 tsps Vanilla Bean Paste
1 Large, Organic Egg (or whatever you have)
1 cup Plain Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
150g Dark Chocolate, cut into chunks
optional: 1/2 cup of Chopped Nuts (salted peanuts, walnuts and pecans would all be good)
Switch the oven on to 180C. In a large bowl beat together the butter and sugar until they are well combined and are fluffy in appearance. Add in the egg and stir well to mix, along with the vanilla bean paste. Next, slowly mix in the flour and baking soda, followed by your chocolate chips and nuts,  if using. Stir until well combined, but try not to mix more than is necessary, it can take away the melting texture of your cookies.
Next, dollop out spoonfuls of your cookie dough onto a lined tray. I used a small ice-cream scoop, and got about 30 out of this batch, but make them whatever size you like and just keep an eye on them in the oven. Slide your tray into the preheated oven, and bake for about 10 to 12 minutes. TIP: If you did not preheat your oven, DON”T just slide your cookies in (like me). Put your tray in the fridge and wait for the oven to heat up first. Also, this dough can keep in the fridge for up to 3 days, so you can bake as you go.
Once they are out of the oven, let them cool on the tray for about 2 minutes, and then slide them onto a wire rack and eat them as soon as you can do so safely. mmmmmmmmmm……….

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