I really don’t want to jinx anything…But I’ve been LOVING our weather lately. Yes, it’s cold. It’s November in South Dakota. That’s a given. But we’ve had about 3 shots of snow…And each time, they’ve melted! You have NO idea how happy this makes me….The claustrophobia hasn’t set it, and any time it’s been close to 40 degrees and relatively sunny, I’ve made it a point to walk home for lunch. Gods know I could use the exercise, and the sunshine helps tremendously! I mean, look at this:
My front yard is still visible! I know, it’s the little things. But really, I’m SO thankful. This time of year, I’m usually wallowing in the dregs of my seasonal depression, and while I know it’s still coming and I’ll feel like the winter will never end, I’ve also been trying to focus on those things I’m grateful for. Like my family. They put up with my nuttiness and still love me anyway. Jay still hasn’t learned that I can’t just snap out of my funks, but gods love him for continuing to try. And the bambino is just a joy…I can’t imagine our lives without him. And while the rest of my family is miles and miles away, I can bring some happy memories flooding back with cookies, of all things. Peanut Butter Blossoms, to be exact.
This cookie to me, more than any other (my sister and cousins may disagree with me), is Christmas at Grandma & Pop’s. This is grazing in the dining room, mimosas, getting in my mom’s, grandma’s and aunts’ ways in the kitchen, reading downstairs while my grandfather watched TV, joking around with my cousins, waiting for dinner to be finished, so we could tear into presents, and then bellying up to Pop’s bar for a shot of Jägermeister before heading home. The Peanut Butter Blossoms were always the first to disappear, because they’re just SO good.
I changed a couple minor things–My grandma always used Hershey’s Kisses with hers. I chose chocolate stars…Long story short, I learned that Hershey’s changed their chocolate formula and now includes something called PGPR, and explains why I thought the last Hershey Bar I ate tasted like waxy plastic. I didn’t see it listed as an ingredient in Hy-Vee’s Chocolate Stars, so I bought them instead.
I also added some cinnamon to my cookie dough. I like the combination of cinnamon and chocolate, as well as cinnamon and peanut butter. I think I added too much, though, because you can hardly taste the peanut butter! Ah, well. I’ll just cut it back next time. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the peanut butter and butter on medium speed. Add in the sugars, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Mix until combined, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl as needed.
Add in the egg, milk and vanilla, mixing until combined. Slowly add in the flour, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.
Place the 1/4 C sugar in a shallow dish. Using a small scoop (1 Tsbp.), portion out the dough, and coat it in the sugar. Place on the prepared baking sheet, and bake the cookies for 9-10 minutes. Remove from the oven, and immediately place a chocolate star in the center of each cookie. Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then cool completely on wire racks.
I am glad I made Peanut Butter Blossoms this afternoon. They’ve been on my list to make for ages now, and this seems like the perfect time. It’s a little taste of home, that I think I needed.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.