Monday, January 24, 2011

Peanut Butter Cookies

Friday, my daughter came home from school wearing a tiara. She sat at the bar eating a peanut butter and pretzel snack like nothing was out of the ordinary-- even though she was wearing a tiara. Y walked in and asked, "Where did you get that crown?"
"P.E." J replied.
Y having had the same teacher in sixth grade knew exactly why she was wearing a tiara. I was still incredibly confused. J was playing somewhat coy regarding her sparkly head piece. I asked Y to please explain the “bling” adorning my daughters head. He simply said, "She's the Dancing Queen!"
My thoughts raced: “The Dancing Queen?!? How could this be possible? How could someone who shares my DNA succeed at dancing?” J filled in the gaps of information and even did a little demo of her dance. My brain was still in a fog trying to process everything I was hearing. As J danced in the kitchen, my mind flashed to her successes. Fear overcame me as I wondered in my fog whether there had been a switch at the hospital. I shook off the fog and decided to enjoy the moment: my daughter -a Dancing Queen.
J's favorite cookie is rarely made - because I love it way too much and can't seem to use much will power toward the soft centered, gently crisp on the edges, full flavor of a peanut butter cookie.
This past fall, after returning home from the arduous task of taking B to college (in Hawaii), I began to experiment with my peanut butter cookie recipe. W and I had frequented Ted’s Bakery on Oahu nearly every day of our trip. We tried many of their menu selections, and loved them all. My first order was always a peanut butter cookie to go. Sometimes that extra large cookie was gone before my omelet was made, and sometimes I’d be smart enough to order two right away. I’d try and tuck at least a portion of that delicious cookie away to enjoy at the beach later in the day.
None of my at home experiments are as good as Ted’s peanut butter cookie. But in my baking defense, it’s hard to compete with a cookie enjoyed under blue skies near rhythmic crashing waves. However, I think you'll be delighted with the results of this cookie:

Peanut Butter Cookies

1/2 cup shortening (Butter Flavored Crisco)
½ cup soft butter
1 cup peanut butter
2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Cream butter, Crisco, and peanut butter with brown sugar. Stir in eggs and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and fully incorporate. Roll into balls and roll in granulated sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 min.

Today, I wear the hat of “Proud mama bear.” And salute J- my Dancing Queen with her favorite cookie.
I’m feeling grateful for that, and a little jealous of my daughters groove:)

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