I love, love, love peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Actually, I think I like them more now than when I was a kid. It’s kind of funny, but the taste is just divine and it couldn’t be a better combination. Last night was the BCS Championship and I was watching it at home alone and just wanted a sweet treat. So, I browsed though this random cookbook, Favorite Brand Name Classroom Treats, that I’d bought in the Bargain Books section at Barnes & Noble a few years back. The book has some really fun recipes and I’m excited to try more (this was my first!). The cookies turned out excellent- they melted in my mouth and had just a little bit of chewiness to them. One warning: the dough is super sticky and one way to make it easier on yourself is to stick the dough in the fridge for about 15 minutes. The original recipe calls for butter flavored shortening, but I stay away from shortening these days, so I just used unsalted butter.
Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter (I used a generic Safeway brand)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup your favorite flavor jam or jelly (I used strawberry)
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine butter, peanut butter and vanilla in a large bowl and mix until well blended and smooth. Add sugars; mix until incorporated completely. Add eggs; beat just until blended. Add flour; mix until dough begins to form ball. Do not overprocess.
Place dough in medium bowl. Shape into 1/2 to 1 tablespoon size balls for each cookie. Place 1 1/2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Press thumb into center of each ball to create deep well. You may want to first dip your thumb in flour so it doesn’t stick to the dough. Fill each well with about 1/2 teaspoon jam.
Bake for 10 minutes, or until lightly browned and firm. Cool on cookie sheets 4 minutes; transfer to cooling racks. Makes 4 to 5 dozen cookies.