Peanut Butter Cookies
Makes about 18
One 16-ounce jar of peanut provides enough for both the cookies and the icing; for this reason, I prefer to use smooth peanut butter. If you like peanut chunks in your cookies, including the optional dry-roasted peanuts, be sure to process them to very small crumbs; otherwise, the dough will be difficult to roll out.
Cream together until light and fluffy:
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Whisk together and add:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
Stir in, if desired:
2/3 cup dry-roasted salted peanuts, ground fine
Stir until all ingredients are well blended; do not overmix. Chill dough for 3-4 hours before rolling. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll dough out on a lightly floured counter to 1/4 inch thickness and cut with your favorite Ann Clark cookie cutter, then transfer cookies onto cookies sheets that have been lined with parchment paper or silicone liners. Bake 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly colored. Let cookies cool slightly on cookie sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Frost with Peanut Butter Icing (recipe below) and decorate with Chocolate Ganache if desired.
Peanut Butter Icing
Note that you may not need all the milk for this recipe.
Cream together until well blended:
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
3-4 tablespoons milk (1 tablespoon at a time)
Blend in milk until the frosting is smooth and light.