I can't believe I just titled this post 'yo mama'. I absolutely loathed when that phrase caught on like some sort of wild fire in high school. All of a sudden classmates were using it at the end of nearly every sentence or as the answer to every question. I just didn't get it. It was purely annoying to my ears. But, this post has nothing to do with that. I chose to use the phrase I loathed so completely only a few years ago to illustrate a point: These peanut butter cookies are not 'yo mama's' pb cookies. The addition of coconut adds a little something different, dare I say exotic (do I have the authority to dub coconut 'exotic'?) They're also not exactly what I had in mind when I began this kitchen endeavor.
Peanut butter cookies always seem to come out of the oven in two ways. Option one, they're thick and a bit dry, but crispy like a shortbread. Option two, completely cakey. These cookies are option two, cakey. What I was after was the chocolate chip cookie version of a peanut butter cookie. Crispy shell, gooey chewy innards. For this recipe I completely winged it. I just couldn't find a recipe that had all the qualities I was looking for. Plus, I knew I wanted to add coconut, and if I thought finding the right peanut butter cookie recipe was a challenge, try finding one with coconut. Nearly impossible. Is the combination that odd? I understand that adding ingredients to cookie dough isn't rocket science. If I didn't understand it before, the compost cookie taught me that all you really need is a good dough base. From there you can let your imagination and baking cupboard go wild. For some reason, peanut butter + coconut sounded like a heavenly combination to my taste buds. The dough I used is almost identical to a chocolate chip cookie, except for the peanut butter and coconut. Regardless of my efforts the end result was cake-city. Don't get me wrong, they're pretty darn delicious. Strong peanut butter flavor, a little twang of salt, plenty of sweet, and the chewy coconut lends a lovely texture to the whole shebang. The edges are crispy, and hold up well when dipped into cold milk, while the core of the cookie remain soft. That's really nothing to complain about. But, despite it's strengths it was not the perfection I sought out to create that afternoon. Cookies can be quite deceptive. For as simple as they may seem, finding sheer perfection is quite a process, if not impossible (much like the hunt for the perfect swimsuit-ha!). When it comes right down to it though, who in their right mind would complain about or turn down a delightfully delicious homemade cookie? Not this girl, that's for sure.
Peanut Butter Coconut Cookies
2 3/4 cups ap flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/3 tsp sea salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup white granulated sugar
1 cup peanut butter
2 tsp vanilla
2 Tablespoons dark corn syrup (optional)
2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
Preheat oven to 375 F
Yield : Appx. 2 dozen good sized cookies (give or take a few)
1. Mix all dry ingredients in small/medium sized bowl.
2. Place butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and peanut butter into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed for 3-5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed to assure everything is incorporating well.
3. Now, one at a time, on a lower setting, add your eggs. Beat at least 3o seconds between each egg.
4. Next, add your vanilla and corn syrup (if you're choosing to use it).
5. Taking a cue from the compost cookies, I beat the dough at this stage on high for about 5-7 minutes to encourage some of the sugar to dissolve.
6. On a very low speed add your flour and mix 30 seconds or until just incorporated thoroughly. Do not overmix, this will give you a dense cakey cookie, not a tender one.
7. Finally, toss in your coconut and mix briefly so that the coconut incorporates.
8. Using an ice cream scoop, equally measure out mounds of cookie dough onto a prepared cookie sheet, or baking stone. Press each cookie down a bit with the back of a fork (also gives you that traditional peanut butter cookie pattern).
9. Refrigerate 30 minutes.
10. Bake in oven for 12-15 minutes. Until just golden brown.
11. Remove from oven, transfer to wire cooling rack.
12. Pour a giant glass of cold milk and devour your work!
Happy Mothers Day!