Peanut Butter Cookie Love

Every time I go home to visit for a weekend, we always make a point to visit my grandma. Consequently, my grandma usually bakes up something delicious. It’s no secret that I have a weak spot for peanut butter so when I went home last time and she made me peanut butter cookies, it was a sad moment when I had to turn them down since they had butter and eggs in them. You can’t win them all, right?

Grandma's peanut butter cookies — nobody does it better than her!

Grandma’s peanut butter cookies — nobody does it better than her!

When I came back from New Orleans, I checked my mail and had the most thoughtful package from a dear friend with the nicest card, book and some vegan cookies — one of the two being the peanut butter variety. Jackpot! They were delicious and exactly what I have been wanting for weeks. I never really make peanut butter cookies as my go-to since 1) they are a mess and a half because peanut butter gets everywhere (as though that’s a bad thing) and 2) peanut butter cookies aren’t the most share-able since a lot of people are sensitive to peanuts and sharing is fun.

I wanted some peanut butter cookies SO bad and I remember stumbling upon Ashley’s charming blog — Blissful Basil — and found a really simple and delicious looking recipe for peanut butter cookies. I highly suggest you check her page out if you get a chance or two. Check out the recipe here (I followed it to the T, well, give or take the parchment paper bit…but I’m getting ahead of myself).

Pulverized oatmeal ... and viola! You have oat flour.

Pulverized oatmeal … and viola! You have oat flour.

I confess I, Danielle, have never cooked with any flour besides standard APF [all-purpose flour], cake flour, or whole-wheat flour. APF is one of the absolute worst things you can cook and bake with since it is often bleached (just for aesthetic purposes) and has literally no nutritional merit — it is just a simple carbohydrate that will convert to sugar. Gross. That’s why I was SO excited to put my blender to use for something beside a smoothie (shout out to my brother-in-law, Shazib, for this awesome 19th birthday gift!). I threw one cup of regular, old-fashioned oats in my blender and set it to “liquefy” and it did the job beautifully. As an aside, my blender is almost 1 HP and is a Kitchen Aid Architect Series blender, so it doesn’t play games. I really can’t speak to other machines, so process/blend/chop in the way that works best for you.

Firing up my trusty stand mixer to blend some peanut butter bliss.

Firing up my trusty stand mixer to blend some peanut butter bliss.

The lighting in my kitchen is rubbish, so please excuse the quality of this photo. Trust me, though, the ingredients blended together beautifully into this fluffy, light batter. Now, I don’t have parchment paper so instead of following that instruction on the recipe, I just sprayed the cookie sheet with cooking spray and hoped for the best.

Cookies before baking...

Cookies before baking…

...and after!

…and after!

I’m not entirely sure why the area I pressed with a fork didn’t stay. The cookies were really sticky when I pressed them and they looked great before I put them in the oven. Maybe something went wrong and I admit, I am not the most intuitive baker in the world — I much prefer cooking to baking. Regardless, all cookies deserve a fair shot so I did a bit of quality control.

These were simply divine — and very, very rich. They were so delicious that I would have no inhibitions eating the entire sheet but after two of them, I considered my peanut butter fix to be more than satisfied. I won’t say these are [calorically] “guilt-free” by any means, but I didn’t feel quite as bad since there isn’t any flour or dairy, of course.

Vegan baking is something I haven’t tried too much but I hope to get better at. There are a lot of really cool tricks to substitute ingredients — namely dairy — and you have a great opportunity to get pretty creative. We’ll see. For now, this apartment smells like peanut butter and love. And that, my friends, is a beautiful thing.


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