Snacktime treat: PB&J cookies
The only thing better than a peanut butter and jelly sandwich is a PB&J cookie
Peanut butter & jelly cookies: The great thing about icebox cookies like these is that they're ready to go whenever you want -- the ultimate quick treat. (Emma Christensen/TMS)
And the great thing about icebox cookies like these is that they're ready to go whenever you want -- the ultimate quick treat. You can bake just two or three before the kids get off the bus, but it's no problem to make a few more if they arrive with friends in tow. And, hey, if you want a midnight snack of your own, I won't tell anyone.
In fact, these particular peanut butter and jelly cookies do best if frozen overnight so that the jelly layers really have time to gel up. Even so, the jelly never totally freezes because of its high sugar content. When you cut them, turn the bar on its side so you're cutting against the grain, so to speak. This helps keep the layers separate instead of compacting them together and squishing the jam out the sides.
The inspiration for this recipe came from one of Martha Stewart's holiday cookies, a cornmeal shortbread layered with thickened fruit preserves. I took one look and couldn't get the vision of peanut butter cookies sandwiched with jam out of my head. Double-decker PB and J sandwich, anyone?
These cookies are exactly what I wanted. The peanut butter layers are crisp on the outside and chewy in the middle while the jelly adds just a touch of fruit flavor. They are truly peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in cookie form.
Peanut butter and jelly icebox cookies
(inspired by Martha Stewart's striped icebox cookies)
Makes about 30 cookies
Note: Cookies are best freshly baked, but they can be stored in an airtight container for several days. The cookie dough will keep frozen for up to three months.
3/4 cup white granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup peanut butter, smooth or chunky as you prefer
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour