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Peanut Butter Buttons Recipe

Peanut Butter Buttons Recipe

Besides regular peanut butter, this recipe also calls for peanut butter chips, which make the dough lighter and smoother. Stringing the licorice laces through the holes is a particularly fun job for kids. This recipe comes from the kitchen of Kathy Farrell-Kingsley, whose cookbooks include "The Woman's Day Cookbook" and "The Woman's Day Dessert Cookbook" (Viking Press).

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter chips
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter (not natural)
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • Red licorice strings (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat the oven to 375°. Microwave the peanut butter chips at medium heat for 1 minute. Stir the chips. If they're still not melted, microwave them for another minute, then stir them until smooth.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the melted chips, peanut butter, butter, and both sugars with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until smooth and fluffy. Blend in the egg, vanilla extract, and salt. Gradually beat in the flour on low speed until a firm dough forms.
  3. Working with half the batch at a time, roll out the dough to a 1/4-inch thickness on a flour-dusted surface, using a lightly floured rolling pin. Cut out cookies with a 3-inch round biscuit cutter and transfer them to ungreased baking sheets. Reroll the dough scraps for additional cookies.
  4. Press the bottom of a small drinking glass into the center of each cookie to create a circular indentation. Then use the end of a drinking straw to cut four buttonholes in each cookie (twisting the straw a quarter turn each time will lift the dough from the hole).
  5. Bake the cookies until set and slightly golden on the bottom, about 8 to 10 minutes. Let them cool on the sheets for 1 minute, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
  6. For a fun finishing touch, lace licorice string through the holes in each cookie. Starting from the back, thread a piece of licorice through the holes, crisscrossing it in front of the cookie. Trim the ends to about 1/2 inch long, leaving them loose at the back. Makes about 32 cookies.

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