So, it snowed more on Saturday. Lots of gentle flurries where it was hard to tell if new snow was actually falling from the sky or if the snow that had already fallen was just blowing around. Either way, it was pretty. Pretty damn cold! The overnight low on Friday night was 11 and on Saturday we actually got down into the single digits. 9 degrees. No kidding. It was warmer in Gillette Wyoming than it was in Nashville Tennessee.
Due to the butt-cold conditions this weekend, we decided it would be in our best interests to hibernate for a couple of days. So that's what we did. I ventured out to get my hair cut. Daniel ventured out to pick up his new glasses. And then we camped out on the couch, piled on the blankets and lit a fire in the fireplace.
Though frigid weather usually saps any and all motivation, I am strangely compelled to produce baked goods when it's cold outside. In order to hibernate, one must have a full cookie jar. Yes?
So, I spent some time filling up the cookie jar with peanut butter cookies, using this recipe I adapted from Allrecipes.com:
Peanut Butter Cookies
1/2 Cup Butter
1/2 Cup Shortening
1 Cup White Sugar
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Egg Yolk
2 Teaspoons Vanilla
2 Cups Crunchy Peanut Butter
2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
Extra White Sugar
Cream the fats and sugars (you could use all butter or all shortening depending on your preference or what you have on hand). Add the eggs, yolk, and vanilla and mix until fluffy. Stir in the peanut butter by hand (I used a mixture of Jif creamy and crunchy). In a separate bowl sift together the flour, soda, and salt. Stir into the peanut butter mixture. (At this point you could also stir in additional chopped nuts or chocolate chips or whatever you like in your peanut cookies - I went the simple route and stirred in nothing). Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use parchment paper, a silpat mat, or grease a cookie sheet. (I used parchment paper on one sheet and a silpat mat on the other and couldn't tell a difference between the two).
Roll the dough into walnut sized balls (mine were a little smaller). Then roll the balls into the extra white sugar. (I baked one dozen NOT rolling them in sugar and they came out fine - less sweet, obviously). Place dough balls on cookie sheet and flatten slightly with a fork (or a spatula if you'd like a flat top rather than the traditional criss-cross pattern).
Bake these cookies for 10-15 minutes. I know that's a huge range but it'll depend a lot on your oven and how you like your cookies. The longer you bake these things, the crispier they get. If you want a chewier cookie, then you'll want to underbake them slightly and let them cool for a few minutes on the cookie sheet before transferring them to a wire rack to cool.
You can attempt to eat these without milk at the ready, but I wouldn't recommend it.