Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Sunken Kisses

Sunken Kisses - December 7, 2009

Note to self: when you plan to make a peanut butter and chocolate kiss cookie, make sure you have Hershey's chocolate kisses. I had made the cookie dough this past weekend but didn't bake them off until last night to bring into work for a meeting this morning. But when I got home last night, I discovered I had exactly 5 Hershey's chocolate kisses, not a whole unopened bag like I had thought. Or if I had said bag, I've hidden it so cleverly that I can't actually find it.

Fortunately, I did have Reese's miniature peanut butter cups from Halloween so I used those instead. They might look a little weird in the picture but they did just fine. Not being overly enamoured of peanut butter, I don't care for Reese's so my taste test cookie was with one of the 5 remaining Hershey kisses. Baker's privilege.

I mentioned in an early post how I had a recipe for these that I've been making for years (the Peanut Butter and Chocolate Kiss Cookies link) so I don't often try new recipe variations for it since I liked the recipe I had. This one isn't that different from my original recipe and it turned out pretty well. This is also from Rosie's All-Butter, Fresh Cream, Sugar-Packed Baking Book. As you can guess, once I get a new baking book, I obsess over it for awhile so expect more recipes to be tried from that book in the near future.

This one was well-received at work and I got more than a few comments on how moist the cookies were. Hmmmm. Not to brag but I try to always make my cookies moist :). A dry cookie is a waste of calories and chewing effort. If your recipe for a peanut butter cookie calls for butter and peanut butter with no shortening, it's easy to make moist cookies. Make sure you don't overbake it either.

Sunken Kisses
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup (lightly packed) light brown sugar
¾ cup granulated sugar, divided
½ cup peanut butter, smooth or crunchy
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg, at room temperature
48 Hershey’s Chocolate Kisses, removed from their wrappers

1. Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or grease them lightly with butter or vegetable oil.
2. Sift the flour, baking soda and salt together into a small bowl and set aside.
3. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, cream the butter, brown sugar, ¼ cup of the granulated sugar, the peanut butter and vanilla in a medium-size mixing bowl until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Stop the mixer twice to scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula.
4. Add the egg and blend on medium speed until it is almost incorporated, about 10 seconds. Scrape the bowl.
5. Add the dry ingredients on low speed and blend 15 seconds. Stop the mixer to scrape the bowl and paddle then blend until the dough is smooth, about 5 seconds more.
6. Measure out 48 rounded teaspoonfuls of the dough and roll them into balls with your hands.
7. Dip one side of each ball in the remaining ½ cup granulated sugar (optional) and place them 2 inches apart and sugar side up on the prepared cookie sheets.
8. Bake the cookies until they are light gold, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the sheets from the oven. Immediately top each cookie with a Chocolate Kiss, wide side down, and press it firmly in the center of the cookie to imbed the kiss.
9. Carefully remove the cookies from the sheets and place them on a plate or cooling rack.

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