Peanut-Butter Blossoms





These are cookies for your soul.

I made these around Christmas time. I had had a voice lesson, and my adorable teacher Suzi, forced me to take some Christmas cookies. And among the cookies were the dinky little peanut butter ones. And they were OUTRAGEOUSLY GOOD. Then I saw this recipe in the New York Times. I decided things had been fated, I HAD TO MAKE THESE BABIES. The story behind these cookies is really cool:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/16/dining/16cookies.html?_r=1&scp=3&sq=peanut%20butter%20cookies&st=cse

The gist of the story if you're too lazy to read the whole thing, is that in some parts of Pennsylvania and Ohio, at weddings people NOT ONLY HAVE A CAKE AND ICE CREAM BUT ALSO HAVE A COOKIE BAR WITH THOUSANDS OF COOKIES.
I'm not even kidding.

This recipe is from one of the families the Times interviewed for the story. The point is, these little peanut-butter blossoms are delicious. They're one of the best comfort, soul-foody, cookies of all time.
So so so good.

Peanut Butter Blossoms
From The New York Times, December 15, 2009
Adapted from the Gerrero family
Time: 35 minutes, plus 1 hour’s refrigeration if needed

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar, more for rolling
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Nonstick spray or vegetable oil for cookie sheet, optional
5 dozen (one 11-ounce package) Hershey’s Kisses, foil removed.
1. Sift together flour, baking soda and salt; set aside. Using an electric mixer, cream together butter, peanut butter, 1/2 cup granulated sugar and light brown sugar. Add egg, milk and vanilla; beat until well blended. Gradually add flour mixture, mixing thoroughly. If the dough is very soft, refrigerate for about 1 hour.

2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray, oil or line a cookie sheet with nonstick liner and set aside. Roll dough into 1-inch balls. (For a precise number of cookies, divide the dough into 5 pieces, and shape each piece into 12 balls.)

3. Roll cookies in sugar and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Bake until very light brown and puffed, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove sheet from oven and lightly press a candy kiss into center of each cookie, allowing it to crack slightly. Return to oven until light golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from oven, cool completely and store in an airtight container.

Yield: 5 dozen cookies.