May 17, 2012

peanut butter cookies with pretzels and chocolate chunks

Sweet and salty, chewy and crunchy, chocolate and peanut butter. These cookies are a pregnant gals dream come true (well, aside from maybe unlimited free foot massages).

These cookies are delicious, and also a little less guilt-inducing than the recipe on the back of a chocolate chip bag: they contain no butter and are partially whole wheat. At least, that's the excuse I am giving myself for eating three consecutively after lunch today.

Peanut Butter Cookies with Pretzels and Chocolate Chunks
adapted from "Peanut Chews" from the King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking book

1 c smooth all-natural peanut butter
1/2 c dark brown sugar
1/2 c white sugar
1 large egg
1/4 c water
2 tbsp corn syrup (honey also works here)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 c whole wheat flour
3/4 c white flour
heaping 1/2 cup pretzels, broken into small bits
3 or 4 oz dark chocolate, chopped
course salt (I was classy and dug out the pretzel salt from the bottom of the bag, this worked out quite well)

Cream together the first nine ingredients (peanut butter through salt), until smooth. Add the flour and stir until combined. The dough will become very stiff, use a stand-up mixer if you have one. Stir in the pretzels and chocolate.

Drop heaping tablespoon-fuls onto a lightly greased baking sheet. Either flatten the cookies by pressing a pretzel into the top of each one, or you can do the classic criss-cross shape using a fork (dip the fork in water when it begins to stick to the dough). Sprinkle with salt.

Bake the cookies for 9-12 minutes at 350 degrees, rotating the baking sheets half way through. The key here is to remove the cookies as the edges are beginning to brown, but the middles are just a bit on the wobbly side still. This will ensure chewy cookies with crisp edges. If they bake too long, they will harden.

Eat warm. Enjoy.

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