You can’t give mediocre cookies and slightly under-set jam to people when they know you run a food blog. No, nowadays it’s not just the thought that counts. Participation gold stars are not a thing. When I give someone a bag of cookies and they go “oh, will these be on your blog???” I know I have to make sure those cookies are the best ef’n bag of cookies they receive this year. My blogger credibility depends on it.
Maybe I’m putting too much pressure on myself, but I suppose a little pressure is good. It keeps you striving for better.
On that note, I present to you most recent batch of Christmas cookies… Tested, tested and tested again (thanks to my family, for eating all my test batches. I couldn’t have done this without you. Seriously.)
Yes. But don’t be nervous. You can’t actually taste the miso itself per se, it just rounds out the flavour of the peanuts making them somehow more peanutty tasting (similar to how balsamic vinegar amplifies the flavour of strawberries). And, of course, salty plus sweet is always good times. Salted dark chocolate. Peanut butter and chocolate. Peanuts and miso. This cookie has all kinds of winning flavour combos going on. Thankfully, none of the complimenting flavours in this recipe end up competing with each other, rather they all support each other in perfect harmony. All in the Christmas spirit?
As someone with a very limited sweet tooth, these treats even won me over since they’re both sweet and a little salty. Sweet enough for the sugar lovers, salty enough for the anti-sugar curmudgeon club (we meet on Wednesdays over wings and beer, I should add a link to a sign up form).
Of course, since it’s the season of decadence, I had to take it one step further and dip them in chocolate.
Since I’m all about textures in food, I bake the cookies until they are just set, making them moist and chewy. I use smooth peanut butter so the cookie itself remains silky and doughy. Then, after dipping them in chocolate, I sprinkle them with finely chopped peanuts or lightly toasted sesame seeds to add some contrasting texture. Also, it looks lovely, amirite?
So here is the question- do you sprinkle peanuts or sesame seeds? The sprinkled peanuts emphasize the sweetness of the cookie, if you’re team sweet-tooth. The toasted sesame seeds bring out the more savoury elements for team salt-tooth.
I like to divide my batch up and make some of each. More often than not, people end up liking both kinds, so the tray never lasts long.
|Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Miso Cookies|| |
- 1 cup butter, room temperature
- 1 cup smooth peanut butter, unsweetened
- ¼ cup white miso paste
- 1½ cups brown sugar, lightly packed
- 2 eggs
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 150g good quality dark chocolate
- ½ cup peanuts, finely chopped and/or 3 Tbsp sesame seeds, lightly toasted
- Preheat oven to 325.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine peanut butter, butter, miso and brown sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla.
- In a medium bowl, mix together the baking soda and flour. Combine wet and dry ingredients and mix until well incorporated.*
- Roll dough into balls 1-1.5 inches in diameter and place on a large baking sheet. Fill a small bowl with water. Using a fork dipped in water, press down each dough ball first one direction, then the other, to create a cross-hatch pattern. Dip the fork in water periodically to prevent sticking.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, until the cookies are cooked but still soft. Remove from oven and, when cool enough to handle, transfer to a baking sheet to cool completely.
- Heat chocolate in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently. When chocolate is melted and smooth, remove from heat. Lay out a piece of wax paper. Dip half of each cookie into the chocolate and lay on the wax paper to cool. Sprinkle dipped cookies with either sesame seeds (more savoury) or chopped peanuts (more sweet). If your house is particularly warm, refrigerate cookies for 5-10 minutes to set the chocolate.