Dom is running a random challenge. The idea is brilliant. Run your hands randomly over the spines of your cookery books. Stop at one. Then open the book and cook/bake whatever appears.The book I stopped at was The Essence of Chocolate by John Scharffenberger and Robert Steinberg. I have never cooked anything from this book so it was good to make me perform so to speak. The book fell open at PB&C Cookies. So here they are. Lovely cookies but (there is always a but isn't there?) I followed the recipe except I halved the amount of cookie dough dropped on the tray. The impression given by the pics and the recipe is that the dough will spread giving you large thin cookies. That does not happen. I had three trays in the oven when I noticed this. I Had four cookies left to bake so I flattened the before ovening. I looked at the pic and I could see they had been flattened by fingers but nowhere in the recipe does it tell you to do so. I hate when recipes leave out details like this. Anyway I flattened the last four cookies with a spoon and that is what you see in the pic. I loved the flavour but would I make them again? No I would not. I will adapt another recipe I have which will give the thinness and chewiness I love. Watch this space.Thanks Dom for making me bake from this book. I don't think I'll use it again though.
Peanut Butter and Chocolate Cookies
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt (may need to reduce depending on your pb's saltiness)
8 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temp
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter (natural preferred, with no added sugar or salt)
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, melted
1 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips (or 6 oz chopped bittersweet chocolate)
1. Preheat the oven to 325° F and line two baking sheets with parchment or a silpat.
2. Melt the unsweetened chocolate.
3. In a mixer, combine the softened butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar and mix on medium speed to blend, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, egg and peanut butter and mix for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the melted chocolate and mix just until combined. Stop the mixer and add the dry ingredients. Mix just until combined.
4. Remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in the chocolate pieces by hand.
5. Drop large mounds of dough, about 3 heaping tablespoons each, onto the two prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly cracked on top, rotating the pans halfway through.
6. Remove from oven, cool 2 min on sheets, then transfer to a rack and cool completely.
OFM editor Allan Jenkins joins film-maker Howard Sooley on a fishing boat pilgrimage to the Lagavulin distillery on the Hebridean island of Islay The pla...