Sunday, December 9, 2012

Peanut Blossoms

AKA Peanut Butter Blossoms, Peanut Butter Kiss Cookie, Hershey Kiss Cookie and other variations. These cookies were created by Freda Smith from Gibsonburg, Ohio in 1957. It is basically a peanut butter thumbprint cookie with a Hershey Kiss on top, instead of jam. She entered Peanut Blossoms in the 9th Pillsbury Bake-Off® Contest in 1957. She didn’t win the contest, but this cookie has been a favorite ever since!

This recipe came from Hershey and has ¼ cup more peanut butter than the original. I have added to the directions from experience. I was inspired to make them today after attending the Christmas play at Arnold’s Creek Christian Church last night. They gave out bags of Christmas candy, including lots of Hershey Kisses. 

Yield: 4 dozen

1 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp. soda
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup shortening
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
2 Tbsp. milk
1/3 cup sugar, in small bowl
48 Hershey Kisses (Any flavor)

1.     Preheat oven to 375°F. Count out 48 chocolates. Don’t unwrap chocolates until immediately after putting cookies in oven. Then you will know how many to unwrap.
2.     Mix together flour and soda in a one quart mixing bowl. Set aside.
3.     In a large mixer bowl, cream together shortening, peanut butter, brown sugar and 1/3 cup of sugar. Blend in egg, vanilla and milk. Stir in the dry ingredients with a large wooden spoon.
4.     Squeeze a scant teaspoon of dough into a ball in the palm of your hand. If you try to roll into a ball, the dough breaks apart. Be careful not to make balls too big or you won’t get 4 dozen. I know it is hard to resist scooping up a full spoon of dough, but you only need a ball big enough to fit the bottom of a Hershey Kiss. Frankly, from the size of the cookies in the picture, there is no way they got 4 dozen from this recipe.
5.     Roll in sugar and place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Two, 10”x15” (inner dimension), cookie sheets fit in my oven. Using the four – three pattern, 25 cookies fit on a sheet.
6.     Bake for 10 minutes. Be careful when picking up cookie sheets to put in the oven, the cookies tend to roll around and may fall on the floor!
7.     Unwrap the chocolates now. You can also set up your cooling racks and do some kitchen clean-up while the cookies are baking.
8.     Remove from oven and set the cookie sheets on a firm, flat, heat-proof surface. You will be pressing on each cookie and don’t want to flip over the cookie sheet. Immediately press one Hershey kiss into center of each cookie; cookie will crack around edges.
9.     Remove from cookie sheet and lay on brown paper or racks to cool. When removing cookies to cooling rack, be careful not to flip over cookie. The chocolate is melting and it makes a little mess. But we can eat our mistakes!