I think the whole chocolate and peanut butter combo is quite boring and dry. Mundane, really.
It’s so predictably wonderful. It’s a classically indulgent pair. It’s so classic that it magically becomes one word: Chocolatepeanutbutter.
However, as of late I have found myself infatuated with the idea of savory ingredients being incorporated into dessert. Like tahini or black pepper or spinach. (Note to self: remember those for the future.) Yet. Chocolatepeanutbutter will forever be one of my favorites. And a favorite among pretty much everyone. Minus those with a nut allergy. (I’m sorry to you all.)
And a flavor that is most requested. Some type of chocolatepeanutbutter dessert was requested by a friend who J-boy and I were going to visit on Sunday morning. Naturally I was happy to oblige. But I get bored of it. (In the only opinion that exists on this blog) it inherently lacks a certain amount of originality and complexity, because it’s so prevalent and obvious. I like my cookies the way I like my friends: original and complex. So I’m always trying to make something different…hence, these cookies, inspired by Half Baked Harvest. With the absurd name. Sorry about that. But I just couldn’t let go of including any of those glorious components.
We have the obvious chocolate (two kinds!) and peanut butter, but I figured that adding some dark chocolate would help to balance the overall sweetness of the milk chocolate and honey. Then I browned the butter, because I pretty much just think that’s the best thing to do with butter. (Wow, that was eloquent.) Its nuttiness enhances the flavor of the peanut butter. And the raw honey, which complements the peanut butter. They all come together to create that originality and complexity that I was craving.
Chocolate Chunk Browned Butter Honey Peanut Butter Cookies
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (300g)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (170g) chocolate chunks (I used milk and dark chocolate)
1 cup (8 oz) butter, browned
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
2 tablespoons honey (I used raw)
1 cup (200g) light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar, packed
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with silpat mat or parchment paper. Set aside
Brown the butter by placing the butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat. It will start to melt and then bubble after about 5 minutes. When it starts foaming, the milk solids will start to separate. Stir the butter frequently with a rubber spatula to make sure the milk solids aren’t sticking. Continue to stir until the milk solids start to brown, about 2-4 minutes,depending on how brown you want it. Spoon a small amount on a plate to test. Place in mixing bowl of stand mixer.
Add the peanut butter and honey to the butter. Let cool to room temperature until solid, around 1 hour, depending on how warm your kitchen is. (You can expedite this process by refrigerating the butter.)
In the meantime, stir together all of the dry ingredients, except for the chocolate chunks. Set aside
Add the light and granulated sugars to the butter/peanut butter mixture. With the paddle attachment beat on medium low until light and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla. Beat just until the egg is incorporated.
Mix in half of the flour mixture on low (speed 1). Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides. Add the chocolate chunks and remaining flour. Mix on low just until incorporated.
Using a cookie scoop (or small ice cream scoop), scoop out the dough until it fits flush to the top of the scoop. Roll into a slightly cylindrical ball. Spilt the dough in half and gentle press the opposing sides together. Place cookie dough at least 2” away from each other. Freeze for 10 minutes until firm. Alternatively, place in refrigerator for 2 hour or until firm. (You can now store them in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.)
Bake for 11-13 minutes until golden on the edges and slightly doughy in the center. (They shouldn’t look completely done when you take them out of the oven.) Let cool on sheet for 1-2 minutes. Then transfer to wire cooling rack.