Thursday, 17 January 2013

Peanut Butter Shortbread

Happy New Year Everyone!!

Please excuse my absence for the past 3 weeks but I have been frolicking by the seaside. Every Christmas break, this year marking 20 years, my Dad's side of the family travel to Narooma to spend 10 or so days living out of tents at one of the caravan parks. 

Every day was consumed with the usual activities; swimming, water skiing, sun baking, reading, venturing to nearby towns, playing 500, I even managed to sneak in a viewing of the amazing Les Miserables (which my cousin and I could not stop singing all the way home). 

But unfortunately baking little treats for you guys is a little bit hard to accomplish when you don't have a proper functioning kitchen. And, well quite frankly, who can be bothered baking on holidays?

So now that I'm back at home, I thought I'd kick of 2013 with one of my ultimate addictions, Peanut Butter. 

I was pondering what to have for breakfast yesterday morning, while standing in the kitchen eating the peanut butter out of the jar. Finally conjuring up toast with peanut butter and honey, I decided to make these biscuits so my infatuation with peanut butter could continue into morning tea. 

I think shortbread is the correct term for these biscuits as they just crumble and sometimes stick to the roof of your mouth (I advise having a glass of water or cup of tea within reach). Dipping them in dark chocolate adds a touch of bitterness with cuts through all the sweet. And, in my opinion, you can't possibly have peanut butter without chocolate.

125g Butter, room temperature
1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
1/3 cup White Sugar
1/3 cup Brown Sugar, lightly packed
1/3 cup Peanut Butter (smooth or crunchy)
1 1/3 cup Plain Flour
1 tsp Bicarb Soda
1/4 cup Peanuts, chopped (if you used smooth peanut butter) 
Dark Chocolate, melted

To make the shortbread...
Pre heat oven to 170 degrees celsius. 

In an electric mixer, cream together the butter, vanilla, sugars and peanut butter until creamy. Add the flour, bicarb soda and chopped peanuts (if used) and mix until a firm-ish dough forms (you may need to add my flour depending on how sticky the dough turns out). 

Roll heaped teaspoonfuls into small balls, place on a baking tray and press down with a fork. 

Bake for around 15 minutes. Cool slightly on the tray before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Melt the chocolate, be either buttons or block, and once cooled dip half the biscuits into the chocolate. OR alternatively you can use a pastry brush to paint the bottoms of the biscuits with chocolate (some of you may prefer the second option as this way you get some chocolate with each bite). 

Place the dipped shortbread on some baking paper until the chocolate hardens. If painting the bottoms, just sit them upside down on the wire rack. 

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