Some little girls grow up learning how to bake and entertain by watching their mothers in the kitchen. My mother, however, has the smallest kitchen imaginable and therefore spends just enough time in there every night to make dinner. Because of this, I never really knew the first thing about cooking, baking, or entertaining.
What I did learn, though, came from my mother's close friend, Hannah, who has lived down the street from my family for as long as I can remember. She is extremely friendly, extroverted, and one hell of a hostess. She hosts countless get-togethers throughout the year, also known as "coming over for coffee and dessert", barbecues, birthday parties, and after-wedding parties. But, the big event of the year is Hannah's Annual Christmas Eve Open House. In the days leading up to the party, she spends all of her time making countless amounts of cookies, desserts, and buffet style food. On Christmas Eve evening, 100+ of Hannah and her family's closest friends and family stop by for an hour or six, and eat, drink, and laugh.
Although I grew up never knowing the first thing about cooking, baking, or hosting, it was always my goal to learn once I got married. I wanted to be just like Hannah. The first time Dayv and I hosted a party, I spent hours contemplating the perfect cookies to make. Because, every good hostess makes a lot of cookies. I worked so hard in the days leading up to our party and worked equally as hard to portray Hannah's effortless demeanor while hosting. It was a great success and I was so proud of myself. But, the best feeling in the world came after I had uploaded the pictures to Facebook and Hannah wrote, "You make me so proud". It was one of the best compliments I have ever received.
Last week, I asked Hannah if I could have copies of some of her top secret cookie recipes. She delivered them, of course, and I spent an afternoon reading them all, thinking about which ones I should make first. I decided on the Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies, not only because they contain my favorite combination of flavors, but because sometimes it's nice making cookies that only need one bowl and minimal measuring instruments. They are also naturally flour-free, making them very simple to modify. Soft and lightly sweet, these are the perfect little cookie to make for your loved ones. 'Tis the season!
Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies
makes approximately 20 cookies
-1 cup all natural peanut butter
-1 cup vegan sugar
-1 tbsp flaxseed meal mixed with 2 tbsp water and set aside for 5 minutes
-2 tsp vanilla extract
-6 oz of dark chocolate, broken into squares; or 20 pieces of dark chocolate
Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, mix together peanut butter, sugar, flax egg, and vanilla extract. Roll dough into 1 inch balls and place them 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake 12 minutes. Remove from oven and place one square of chocolate on each cookie and very gently press down. Bake for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. Enjoy!