Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

 I recently had a conversation with my cousin Phoebe about flourless baking, and she gushed on and on about the recipe for flourless peanut butter cookies in the Gourmet Cookbook. She was right of course, these cookies are totally worth gushing over. Light and airy in texture, they quickly melt in the mouth in a wonderfully peanut buttery way. They’re mindlessly simple to make, and the repetitive tactile task of rolling the dough into symmetrical balls provided me with just the right kind of calming meditation I needed to fend off the Sunday Night Blues. My mom and I used to always fight about the appropriate size for cookies. Whether we were carefully hand rolling balls for pecan puffs or dolling out spoonfuls of chocolate chip cookie dough, my measurement was always larger than hers, and she just couldn’t hold back her comments on what she thought was excessive. She found a way to solve the size argument last Christmas by buying me my very own cookie scoop. Here it is in all its glory:

It’s a wonderful little machine. Like an ice cream scoop, you squeeze the handles together and it pushes out a rounded 2 tsp. amount of dough. Now all my cookies are never larger than 2 tsp. worth of dough, and my mother doesn’t have to waste any breath commenting on excessive proportions. 

This recipe is adapted from the Gourmet Cookbook. Please note that natural style thick peanut butter won’t work in this recipe. You want your peanut butter to be as close to Skippy texture as possible (while avoiding Skippy if possible…) I used Whole Foods brand organic creamy peanut butter to great success.

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Makes about 3 dozen cookies

1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp. baking soda

Preheat oven to 350? F.
Butter a large baking sheet.
Beat together peanut butter in the bowl of an electric mixer at medium speed until well combined, about 2 mins.
Beat in egg and baking soda until the dough starts to stick into a ball.
Roll 2 tsp of dough into round balls and arrange about 1 inch apart on buttered baking sheet.
Partially flatten balls with tines of a fork, making a crosshatch pattern.
Bake cookies until puffed and pale golden, about 10 mins per batch. Cool on baking sheets for 2 mins, then transfer to racks to cool.

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