doesn't this little guy look delectable? i was craving peanut butter today and that reminded me of an oft-told story about my failed attempt at making peanut butter balls. sophomore year of college, when i first started trying to cook things, i was elated at the success of the first meal i cooked for a group, (fettuccine alfredo with broccoli and garlic bread) and thought, why not try my hand at desserts next? how about peanut butter balls? ha. did you know that there are multiple kinds of sugar? okay, sure, brown, white...no, there is more than one kind of white sugar! confectioner's sugar is not the same as granulated sugar. here is the first lesson i ever learned about cooking. confectioner's sugar IS powdered sugar. white, powdery, you get the idea. anyway, i didn't know that then. and so, i mixed all the ingredients together, which formed....a giant sandstorm. nothing stuck together! so i thought i'd be clever and make it into a cake. nope. still didn't stick together; in fact it was more like a giant sand dune after that!
--> feasting fact - PEANUT BUTTER:
oatmeal peanut butter cookies
bowl 1 (large):
1/2 c. butter, softened (zap in the microwave until squishy, it's ok if some melts)
1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
1/2 c. white sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp amaretto (almond-flavored liqueur; if you don't have any, use more vanilla)
bowl 2 (just for mixing the dry items before adding to the above):
3/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1.25 c. dry instant oatmeal (like Quaker, etc.)
cream the items under bowl one together, except add the egg last after mixing everything else first. beat until creamy.
now, mix all the dry ingredients in bowl two together and pour into bowl one. use a spoon or spatula to mix rather than using the beater. stir well, then add the oatmeal. mix it up really well! it should be a nice, fluffy consistency that isn't too sticky. i really liked working with this dough.
heat the oven to 350. now, take a spoon and drop small chunks onto nonstick baking pans. keep the sizes pretty small (smaller than ping pong balls). then press each with a fork once to flatten. bake for exactly 9 minutes until light brown. they will look airy when you take them out but after about two minutes they set nicely. let cool, and meanwhile, make the sandwich filling below!
sweet peanut butter filling
3 tbsp butter, softened
1 c. confectioner's sugar (aka powdered!)
1/3 c. peanut butter
3 tbsp heavy whipping cream
1/4 tsp vanilla
cream all of this goodness together with a mixer. now, the cookies should be hardened. pick two that are the same size, spread some of the filling on, and squish them together to make sandwiches! if you are big on presentation, gently place the second cookie on top with a circular motion- that will get the filling to spread evenly to the edges. :) makes 50 cookies, or 25 sandwiches.
*recipe adapted from this website. just modified some of the amounts and added a little amaretto to kick up the flavor. also, starting now i am taking these pictures as i bake, so hopefully that will add a little color and make the food look even tastier...man am i hungry for one of these RIGHT NOW.