Yesterday morning I was hanging in the Baking Steel test kitchen with my oldest son. I could tell he was on a mission, fishing for something good to eat....turns out, he wanted cookies. So, we took to the Internet in search of a cookie that would satisfy his sweet tooth. It seemed that peanut butter cookies would fit the bill. We found a recipe that looked like a winner on Sally's Bake Blog-it promised soft, classic peanut butter cookies with minimal effort on our part. Done!
In my opinion, it's pretty difficult to make a "bad" cookie. Sure, you get the occasional overcooked bottom or soggy middle, but for the most part good results. However, I was looking to UP my cookie game. I wanted to make my son a batch of evenly browned and baked, peanut butter treats with AH-MAZING results! I knew I had the secret weapon to make it happen...the Baking Steel.
Now, don't get me wrong, I've used the Baking Steel for cookies countless times and have made some of the best cookies ever! But, I usually use parchment paper as a buffer between the steel and the cookies. The parchment paper helps with loading/unloading, but I figured I could work around that if I was fast. For the first time in Baking Steel history, I was determined to fly without a "safety net" and bake these cookies directly on the Baking Steel. The bottom literally cooked to a glorious golden perfection. Mic drop!
The technique with the "naked" steel definitely requires a speedy hand, but the results are so worth it! Be careful who you share these with...you'll be penciled in for "cookies" at every potluck, dinner party or bake sale around town!
Create some love,
Recipe by Sallysbakingaddiction.com
Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature1
1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
3/4 cup (150g) packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature preferred
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup (250g) creamy peanut butter
3 cups + 2 Tablespoons (391g) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar, for rolling (optional)
Directions: (modified for the Baking Steel)
Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream the softened butter and both sugars together on medium speed until smooth. Add the eggs and mix on high until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and peanut butter and mix on high until combined. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, toss the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together. Add to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Dough will be thick, yet very sticky. Cover dough tightly and chill for at least 3 hours (and up to 2 days) in the refrigerator.
Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Place a sheet of parchment paper on your counter top.
Roll balls of dough (about 1.5 tablespoons of dough per cookie) and roll into granulated sugar or salt. Place rounds on parchment paper. Press fork into the tops to create the criss-cross pattern.Carefully load these directly onto your hot Baking Steel. Carefully leaving about 2 inches between each cookie, these will spread. Bake for 10 minutes or until very lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft and undone. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack to cool completely. The cookies will continue to "set" on the baking sheet during this time.
Make ahead tip: Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Allow to come to room temperature and continue with step 3. Baked cookies freeze well - up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well - up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw.