Thursday, September 3, 2009

Peanut Butter with Chocolate Ganache Sandwich Cookies

Seeing as I have VATS of Ganache left over from a wedding cake and how it is one of my favorite things in the world (I could drink it REALLY!) And secondly the main thing I crave now that I am doing {Body For Life} is peanut butter. These hit the spot! For me they are made on my free day and not allowed to be on the premises any other time. No need for self control, I just get rid of temptation!

Seriously so delicious and one of my new favorite things! Also just the cookie recipe is excellent and one to hold onto.

Peanut Butter Crisscrosses


2 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. baking powder

¼ tsp. salt

pinch of grated nutmeg

2 sticks (8 oz.) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup peanut butter (crunchy or smooth)

1 cup packed light brown sugar

¾ cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 ½ cups chopped salted peanuts

about ½ cup sugar, for rolling


Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 350°. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.

Whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and nutmeg.

Working with a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed for a minute or two, until smooth and creamy. Add the peanut butter and beat for another minute. Add the sugars and beat for 3 minutes more. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each addition. Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl and, on low speed, add the dry ingredients, mixing only until they just disappear. Mix in the chopped peanuts. You’ll have a soft, pliable (mushable, actually) dough.

Pour the ½ cup of sugar into a small bowl. Working with a level tablespoonful of dough for each cookie, roll the dough between your palms into balls and drop the balls, a couple at a time, into the sugar. Roll the balls around in the sugar to coat them, then place on the baking sheets, leaving 2 inches between them. Dip the tines of a fork in sugar and press the tines against each ball first in one direction and then in a perpendicular direction – you should have a flattened round of dough with crisscross indentations.

Bake for about 12 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point. When done, the cookies will be lightly colored and still a little soft. Let the cookies sit on the sheets for a minute before transferring them to cooling racks with a wide metal spatula. Cool to room temperature.

Repeat with the remaining dough, making sure to cool the baking sheets between batches.

For the ganache:
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 tbsp. butter
9 oz. bittersweet chocolate, broken into 1/4 oz. pieces

Bake the cookies according to the original instructions, only make them smaller (I used a small Pampered Chef scoop and baked them for 8-9 minutes). Allow to cool completely.

To make the ganache, heat the heavy cream and the butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Place the chocolate in a stainless steel bowl. Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour, or until the ganache has thickened enough to be piped onto a cookie.

Match the cooled cookies up into pairs by size. Turn one cookie of each pair over so that the flat side is facing up. Place the chilled ganache into a plastic bag with a corner snipped off. Pipe a swirl of ganache onto the flat face of each pair. Top with the other cookie of each pair and press it onto the ganache, so that it is pushed to the edges of the sandwich. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until set. Bring to room temperature to serve.

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