Thursday, June 18, 2009

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies

The great food search is a personal one, and the pot at the end of the rainbow is filled with something different for most of us: the perfect chocolate chip cookie, the perfect brownie, the perfect marinara or maybe the perfect homemade sandwich bread. For me it's the search for the perfect peanut butter cookie.

And I think I may have found it.

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies

I am and always will be a peanut-butter junkie. A junkie to the point that I can't have it in the house or I consume it in a ridiculously quick period of time. My husband shares this affinity - PB&J sandwiches are one of his favorite snacks, and Cash is already attuned to this love. He will eat every piece of a peanut-butter sandwich if one is offered to him - something he doesn't do with every food he's given.

When I was a kid I loved to get cookies at the mall. Some kids want ice cream, and some kids want to hit the candy store, but I knew a good thing when I smelled it. Those cookies smelled fabulous, and I swear they piped that fresh-baked cookie smell into the floor of every store it was so consuming. (Come to think of it I think they still do this, though I have to admit my trips to the mall are much more few and far between as an adult than when I was a teenager.)

My perfect peanut-butter cookie is shatteringly crisp on the edges, with a slight give in the center when you bite into it. It doesn't have anything extra, like pieces of crushed peanuts (but perhaps a few miniature Reese's Pieces thrown in wouldn't exactly hurt it.) It has to be big enough to fill my hand, and thick enough that one or two will do at a time, but it shouldn't fall apart in my hand, and it shouldn't leave a slick feeling on my tongue. This recipe is everything it should be and nothing it shouldn't.

I've made these twice to rave reviews; the first time as little cookies for a party and the second time as big, snack-size, kid-approved cookies to keep at home. (I used my cookie-dough scoop to get a uniform shape. They were the perfect size.) You've gotta make these. You just gotta. They leave the mall cookies in. the. dust. You will not be disappointed.

I promise.

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies
Adapted from AllRecipes
Printer-friendly version

Ingredients
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup margarine, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 cup peanut butter
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup quick-cooking oats

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, beat shortening, butter, sugars and peanut butter until smooth, about three minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt. Add to peanut butter mixture and mix well. Fold in oats, stirring until just combined.
4. Drop by teaspoon-fulls onto cookie sheets.
Bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until cookies are just brown on the edges. Cool for a couple of minutes on sheets before moving to wire racks to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.