Homesick Peanut Butter & Chocolate Cookies

An easy recipe for peanut butter and chocolate cookies that’ll get you through that fresher’s hangover, while using (basically) only three ingredients.

So, as Fresher’s comes to a close and we clear our last empty paracetamol pack off our bed stand, the lingering hangover might be triggering a tinge of homesickness in more than a couple of us. I always find the best way to fight these feelings is through a taste of home and comfort. This immediately led my mind to one place: cookies. So, I thought I’d show you a recipe that tells your parents: “actually, I CAN handle myself, sort of”.

Now, the reason I love this recipe is because, at its base, it’s comprised of three ingredients, making it not only easy but also cheap. I don’t know if I’m just a peanut butter addict but there’s something about these cookies that just makes them disappear as soon as they come out the oven. The simplicity of their design means your pallet recognizes each ingredient. The little bit of salt really brings out the richness of the peanuts, while the deep bitterness of the dark chocolate is a great offset to the sweetness of the sugar.

Personally, I think a recipe should be seen more like a sketch than the finished picture, so please do tinker with this, but I will say that I’ve made these enough times to give some tips to keep in mind when doing so. Most importantly, use light brown sugar. It can be any kind, I ended up using muscovado, but I just find it provides a much chewier texture than white sugar, and is naturally more absorbent, making it better for dipping in milk, which works perfectly with the rich peanut butter. Secondly, be careful with the dark chocolate. It may not seem like you’re adding very much, but dark chocolate has such a strong flavour that it can otherwise overpower the peanut butter, which should be the one holding the spotlight, and the small amount of chocolate gives the cookies this pretty, mottled finish. 

Variations I would try, if you don’t mind spending a bit more, would be using 50/50 milk and dark chocolate to add more contrast or even topping it with unsalted, finely chopped peanuts.

IngredientsCost
225g low sugar smooth peanut butter76p of £2.35 Tesco Smooth Peanut Butter 700G
250g light brown sugar58p of £2.30 Tesco Light Brown Soft Sugar 1Kg Pack
1 large egg or 2 medium eggs23p of 70p Tesco 6 Eggs
1 teaspoon salt 
70g (around 70%) dark chocolate from a bar cut finely35p of £1 Tesco Dark Chocolate Bar 200G
 Total: £1.92

1) Stir together the peanut butter, sugar, salt and eggs until fully combined and it develops a smooth texture

2) Cut the dark chocolate into small pieces (around irregular half centimeter chunks), and mix these, as well as the filings that come off while chopping, into the dough

3) Leave your dough to chill in the fridge for 30 minutes and preheat your oven to 180°C

4) Once your dough is chilled, line a baking tray with baking paper and split the dough into around 16 evenly shaped chunks

5) Use the back of a fork to press the chunks down twice, leaving a grid pattern on top of the cookies

6) Sprinkle a little more sugar on top of the cookies and then bake for 18 minutes or until just set (these will harden more during cooling)

7) Leave to cool for a couple minutes (difficult, I know) and enjoy!

Luke Webb