Few cookies hold my attention as thoroughly as the classic, chewy-on-the-inside Peanut Butter. It's my go-to choice at any bakery, the familiar fork-marks somehow deeply comforting. And while I've made my fair share of cookies, oddly, I've never made these.
This afternoon I texted Tara and asked for her favourite recipe. Turns out it's her own. And it's a good one. The perfect texture, just the right sweet/salty balance, and a little something special: honey.
I wasn't the kind of kid to go mixing my foods (even garden-variety peanut butter and jelly was risqué in my books) so have never treaded the peanut-butter-and-honey sandwich waters. But it's a classic-combo for a reason, and was the impetus for Tara's recipe below. And take it from me: they're delightful.
Tara O'Brady's Peanut Butter and Honey Cookies
(The following taken directly from Seven Spoons.)
With a crisp edge and a soft interior, these cookies are one step closer on my quest for peanut butter perfection.
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (up to 1/2 teaspoon if you particularly like savoury sweets. Jason's note: I do, thank you.)
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup (8 tablespoons/1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup chunky peanut butter (Jason's note: I used Extra Smooth, cuz that's how we roll around here.)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed golden or dark brown sugar
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
sea salt, optional, for sprinkling (Jason's note: I forgot this step, though they're perfectly salty.)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Use parchment paper to line several standard baking sheets and set aside.
In a bowl, sift together the flour, salt and baking soda. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer, cream together the butter and peanut butter until light and fluffy. Add the sugars and honey and beat on high for three minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Add the egg and vanilla, then mix on medium speed until well blended.
Add the dry ingredients to the bowl and stir to just combine. Using a 1 1/4" ice cream scoop dish out mounds of dough onto the prepared baking sheet (alternatively, use a generous 2 tablespoons of batter for each cookie), spacing them about 2 inches apart. Place onto baking sheet and freeze the batter for 10-15 minutes to set up and chill thoroughly.
Dip a fork into warm water and use the tines to press the dough balls lightly; you only want to slightly flatten their shape and leave the imprint of the fork. Freshly dip the fork between pressing each cookie. Sprinkle with sea salt, if desired.
Bake in the preheated oven for 16 minutes, rotating the sheets once during baking. Cool on pan for two minutes, then remove to a baking rack to cool completely.
Makes 18 (Jason's note: If you use a tablespoon of dough for each, you can get 60! And goodness knows I like me a high-yield recipe.)