Thursday, December 4, 2014

12 Days of Christmas Cookies - Day 3: Red Velvet Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies

Day 3: Red Velvet Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies from I Am Baker
Another holiday favorite whenever I throw a holiday dessert party or give out holiday goodie bags is Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies. I have friends who always go for these first just to make sure they have room for them. Which I think is pretty funny. For the holidays, I went with I Am Baker's Christmas twist of making a red velvet version. Just as easy to make and the color scheme screams, "Hello, Christmas, what took you so long?"

To keep the red color front and center, I rolled the cookie dough balls in red sanding sugar ($5.95 from Williams Sonoma in the little jar beats the finer "crystals" of the cheap grocery store red sugar) before baking them. I thought they looked a bit prettier that way plus I like the additional crunch and sweetness from the sanding sugar.
1 bag Hershey's Kisses
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter 
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 egg 
2 tablespoons milk
2 teaspoons vanilla 
1 teaspoon red gel food coloring (I used Schilling red food coloring)
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa 
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda 
pinch salt
1/4 cup red sanding sugar
  1. Beat butter, peanut butter, and sugar in stand mixer for about 2 minutes on medium speed. Reduce speed to low and add egg, milk, vanilla and red food coloring. Mix for about 30 seconds to incorporate, then increase speed to medium high and blend until light and fluffy.
  2. In a separate bowl, sift cocoa, flour, baking soda and salt. With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture to sugar mixture and beat until just combined.
  3. Shape dough into 1" balls. Chill for at least 1 hour. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 
  4. Pour red sanding sugar into shallow bowl. Roll dough balls in sanding sugar and place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper about 2 inches apart.
  5. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. While cookies are baking, unwrap Hershey Kisses. When cookies are done, remove from oven and immediately press Hershey Kiss lightly into the center of each cookie. Cool to room temperature.

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