Thursday, August 2, 2012

BBQ = Boring, Cookies = Awesome

I usually decide on what I'm making for dinner when I get up with the pups as Hungry Husband goes off to PT at 6am. Most of the time I have to thaw meat or start a marinade, so I get that going pretty early. But yesterday, I was having too much fun being lazy, drinking my coffee and playing with the puppies. By the time my husband got home, I still hadn't thought about dinner so I asked him what he was hungry for. "Everything". Well ok then.

The day before we get paid, I make a list of 14 dinners and everything I need to make them. Sometimes I use the same recipe and just make sure I double it so that we can have it two times this pay period. This way, I know exactly what I need from the grocery store and it helps me save money. It's easier for me to shop knowing what I need vs. what I want. This also gives my husband a sort of "menu". So I pulled out my shopping list and showed him. He decided on BBQ chicken. Boring. But so delicious.

So since I really don't make anything for our BBQ dinners from scratch (I use Jack Daniels Original no.7 Recipe BBQ Sauce, SO GOOD, for a marinade and then just make some mashed potatoes, corn, and broccoli. Again, boring, but yummy!), here's another recipe I made last night. I keep a batch of dough in the freezer for times like last night when my husband starts craving sweets at 9pm. Old Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies!

I found this recipe from the Crazy About Cookies cookbook. This cookbook has some fantastic recipes, but my husband loves peanut butter and this is one of the easiest cookies recipes I've ever made! They turn out a little crispy around the edges and very soft and chewy in the middle. Such a perfect peanut butter cookie. Plus, it gives me a reason to pull out my amazing Kitchen Aid mixer that my mommy got me as a wedding gift :) She is queen of baking!

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/4 cups creamy peanut butter
1 cup vegetable shortening (I just substitute this for margarine if I don't have it)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs

Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl and set aside. Blend the peanut butter, shortening, and sugars in a large bowl with a mixer until fluffy. Beat in the vanilla and eggs. Gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until the dough is firm. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Ready two cookie sheets (I just put foil and a little cooking spray on my cookie sheets for easy clean up). Shape the dough into 2-inch balls (I do this using two spoons or else the warmth of my hands makes the dough all gooey). Place the balls on cookie sheets 2 1/2 inches apart. Bake for 12-16 minutes (12 minutes seems to be just enough for my oven, but yours will probably bake differently) until light golden brown. Let cool on a rack 10 minutes before serving (yeah right, my husband takes those cookies straight out of the oven!)

The recipe yields 18 cookies. I usually get double out of this! Not sure if I just make my dough balls smaller, but I get a lot of cookies when it's all said and done! I keep the cooled cookies in a zip lock plastic bag, inside a cookie jar. Keeping them in the bag allows them to stay softer, longer! Add some chocolate chips or chopped peanut for a little extra flavor :)


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