My little sister turns 21 today. 21. The age of adulthood. And drinking. And gambling. And generally having fun in a legal-ish type way.
But first, before all of that, I had to make her something to celebrate with. Rachel loooooooves peanut butter. Loves it with a capital L. So, taking this all into consideration, I made her my homemade version of our favorite Girl Scout cookie, the Tagalong (also known as Peanut Butter Patties. Original Tagalongs and Samoas, however are the best. You can read about the GS cookie bakeries and varieties here, if you're so inclined.)
This had nothing to do with my love of peanut butter and chocolate. This was solely for the purpose of making my little sister happy. I'm pleased to report that these cookies are deliciously like the originals. I only had one, just for testing purposes.
Seriously, just one.
Happy birthday, little sister!!!
(from the wonderful Love and Olive Oil)
1 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups white flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons milk
1-1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
12 oz milk chocolate or semisweet chocolate chips (your preference)
1-1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil
Preheat your oven to 350 and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Cream the butter and sugar and slowly add the flour, baking powder and salt (this way it won't make too much of a mess). The dough will form a ball in the bottom of the bowl. Chill the dough for 15 minutes, then roll out to 1/4 inch thickness and cut into 1 to 1-1/2 inch circles. You could do this part by hand if you had a really good eye, but let's face it, I don't, so I used the cookie cutter. Place on the lined sheets, close together because they won't spread very much. Bake for 12-13 minutes, until the edges are browned. Place the cookie sheets on a wire rack, and press a thumb-sized indentation into the middle (this is where the peanut butter will go), then transfer off the sheet onto the racks. Save your parchment paper.
Once the cookies cool, stir together the peanut butter, powdered sugar, pinch of salt and vanilla into a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 20-40 seconds, until the mixture is soft enough to pipe. Put the peanut butter mixture into a pastry bag or a plastic baggie with the corner snipped off and pipe a small amount into the middle of the cookie (about 1 teaspoon, depending on the size of your cookies). I used a knife to spread the peanut butter until it was flattened. As the peanut butter mixture hardens, in a small bowl, melt the chocolate chips in the microwave (usually 2 rounds of 30 seconds will do) or over a double boiler. Stir in the vegetable oil. Place your saved parchment paper under your wire rack. Dip the top of each cookie into the chocolate, and place on the wire rack to harden.
Store in a cool place, if you have any left to actually store. :o)