Today was the Vine Street Victorian Showcase, where they block off our street and allow droves of people to wander around to listen to storytellers, singers, and bands, see Scrooge and Santa and dancers, eat popcorn and cookies, you get the picture. It’s an annual event, and it’s always quite a bit of fun. We usually have a mini open house. Actually, it’s more like we let our family members and friends come use our bathroom! I always have hot cider (this year I got the Trader Joe’s Spicy Cider, which is really, really yummy) and cookies and stuff.
In addition to some molasses spice cookies, I made Peanut Butter Cup Cookies, the recipe for which I found while surfing food blogs. There aren’t many combinations more delectable than peanut butter and chocolate, if you ask me.
Before you read on for the recipe, here’s a picture of our Christmas tree!
It’s a manzanita (or, as Peter has been saying incessantly, a “hard chaparral dominant”). We decided to do something different this year, since one of us is usually allergic to whatever type of Christmas tree we get. I think it’s kind of cute. Next year, though, I kind of want one of those silver tinsel pom pom trees …
Peanut Butter Cup Cookies
Makes A LOT
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 stick butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter (I use Skippy)
1 large egg, room temp
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt (more if you use unsalted peanut butter)
2 bags mini Reese’s peanut butter cups
Note: You really should have a mini muffin pan to make these. I had to go out and buy one, but it only cost about $8, and hey, now I can make lots of mini quiches if I ever want to.
– Combine the two sugars and the butter and beat until light and fluffy. Add the peanut butter, egg, and vanilla, and blend well. Add the dry ingredients and combine. Form into a ball-like blob and chill for several hours or overnight. Also chill the bags of candy.
– Preheat the oven to 350F. Remove the dough and candy from the fridge. Let the dough sit out while you unwrap the candies. After you have unwrapped the cups, put them back in the fridge. Scoop spoonfuls of dough into the mini muffin pan (I used a tablespoon). After you fill them all, lightly press the dough down and make a little indentation in the center.
– Bake for about 7 minutes or until the edges begin to brown.
– Remove from the oven and quickly stick a PB cup into the center of each cookie. Put the tin back into the oven for one minute. Remove from the oven and allow the cookies to cool in the tin for about 5 minutes. Remove and cool completely on a rack (I used a little icing spatula to dig the cookies out of the pan). NOTE: Though you will probably be tempted to eat one while it’s still warm, you should wait; I know from my own experiments today that the cookies are much more delicious after they have cooled completely.
Repeat the process until you’ve used all the dough. I was able to get two and a half pans’ worth of cookies. Also note that you should put water into any empty holes in the pan.