Goodbye Variety Flour Thursday. Hello Peanut Butter Cookies.
June 20, 2011
I’ve been thinking about how to write this post all weekend, putting off the actual writing bit like that would ease the mental burden instead of what it did, which was make me even more stressed out about the whole thing. Because I couldn’t come up with a more interesting or witty way to introduce my thought, here it goes: I’m doing away with Variety Flour Thursdays. I realize this decision affects no one but myself, but it affects me in a big way. When I started this blogventure, my greatest fear was that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with it week to week because I’m notoriously bad at keeping a strict schedule and making time-related commitments. Turns out I got pretty good at the week by week thing, and was even able to keep Breakfast Tuesday afloat, but Variety Flour Thursday got to be too much. So there’s them apples.
The good news is that it forced me to think about why I’m actually blogging about my baketivities, why I started, and how I will continue. I started the site because I love baking for the people around me (and myself from time to time), and figured I might as well document what was going down, to help me articulate my thoughts surrounding an activity that I engage in two to three times a week, minimum. I continue to write and bake and eat because it makes me feel good to know I have the ability to connect with anyone who stumbles upon this site, not just the lovely people who receive my baked goods. Finally, I will be blogging for a long time and must understand that the way I function best is to bake what I want, when I want, regardless of the day.
Of course, I will definitely use different flours in my baking because I’m constantly on the search for new flavors and fun combinations. I found this recipe for peanut butter cookies and thought about how perfect it was for this post, this bit of news. Peanut butter cookies make me intensely happy, embarrassingly so, and this recipe allows the use of not only different flours but also non-processed, dare-we-say healthy, sweeteners and oils. AND, on top of everything, it is vegan friendly. And insanely delicious. I might be in love, which utterly and completely makes up for any sort of incompetence I might feel as a person who can’t for the life of her stick to a schedule.
PS- This is the first recipe I’m baking from 101 Cookbooks and I can’t tell you how excited I am about it. I’ve been reading her blog and flipping through her gorgeous cookbooks for MONTHS, since I started blogging, really, and have never been able to settle on a “first recipe”. Until now. Yay!
Peanut Butter Cookies
(Recipe adapted from 101 Cookbooks)
Yields almost 3 dozen cookies using a generous tablespoon size cookie scoop
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour, spelt flour, or all-purpose flour (I used 1 cup all-purpose and 1 cup spelt, along with an 1/3 cup all-purpose flour because I used oily natural peanut butter)
1 teaspoon baking soda
(3/4 teaspoon salt if using unsalted peanut butter)
1 cup chunky peanut butter
1 cup maple or agave syrup (I used a maple-agave blend)
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil (less if you used an oily peanut butter)
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and place oven rack in the top third of oven. Prepare cookie sheets by lining them with parchment.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour(s), baking soda, and salt, if using.
3. In a medium-size mixing bowl, or large liquid measuring cup, combine peanut butter, maple syrup, olive oil, and vanilla extract. Stir until homogenous.
4. Add liquid ingredients to dry and stir just until combined; streaks of flour are okay.
5. Let dough sit for at least 5 minutes before giving it one more stir or two.
6. Drop cookies by the tablespoonful, or use a cookie scoop, an inch apart on prepared baking sheets. Stick unused cookie dough in the fridge while dropped cookies bake for 10 to 11 minutes per sheet. Be careful not to overbake these particular cookies.
7. Let cookies sit on cookie sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Keep cookies covered at room temperature up to 3 days.