"Capturing Life"

Happy Valentine’s Day 2013!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I openly admit it.  I. LOVE. Valentine’s. Day!

When my boys attended public school it was one of their class parties that I loved helping with.  When we began homeschooling them, it was the one party a year we threw.  We invited friends, played games, did crafts, had lunch, decorated cookies and exchanged valentines.  It took an army of help from other moms and from my own family, but we had such fun and my kids have wonderful memories of those parties.  It was difficult to give the parties up when my youngest son grew too old for them.  In fact, the first year we agreed he and his friends were too old to make valentines crafts we decided to invite them all ice skating instead.  It was just so much fun to have one special day a year that was focused on love.  Not romantic love, just a day to say “I love you” to those we really care about.

Ric and I have never looked at it as our opportunity to get away from our kids and go out for a romantic evening.  Somehow trying to reserve a table in an expensive restaurant, be surrounded by strangers all trying to achieve “romance” and eating food that is sub-par with what I could make for us at home never appealed to us.  Instead, we always have chosen to stay home, have a formal dinner with our best china and decorated table, complete with candle light, and enjoy it all with our whole family.  My boys have always looked forward to it as well and frequently pitch in to help with the preparation for the evening and even dressed up for dinner.  Well, okay, the truth is when they were younger they dressed up for dinner; now we’re just happy they show up for dinner!  ha ha!

So, with my love for this day of “Love”, I thought that, for this blog post, I would share my favorite recipe.  It’s one that I only make when February rolls around.  I’ve hesitated in the past to share the recipe because, like all who love to cook, I count this as one of my “signature” recipes and wanted to keep it as something special from me.  My family always looks forward to these cookies coming from the oven and we all savor every bite of them.  If you like Chocolate and Peanut butter, then you will love these cookies!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies

(I think the recipe is from “Taste of Home” magazine.  I came across it many years ago while waiting for a Dr. visit. I think I might have even torn the page from the magazine in the waiting room.  Shame on me!!)

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup Peanut butter, divided
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar

 In a large mixing bowl, cream butter, sugars and 1/4 cup peanut butter.
Add egg and vanilla; mix well. Combine flour, cocoa and baking soda.
Add to creamed mixture and mix well.

Blend confectioner’s sugar with
remaining peanut butter until smooth.

Roll both the chocolate dough and the peanut butter dough  into 24 balls, the chocolate being approximately 1″ and the peanut butter being about 1/2″.

 

 Flatten each into a 3″in. circle.

Place one peanut butter ball on each circle;

bring edges over to completely cover it. (dough may crack; reshape cookies as needed)

Place cookies with seam side down on parchment paper lined baking sheets.

If using a cookie cutter to help shape them, place cookie cutter on baking sheet and then place dough in center of the cookie cutter.

 

Flatten each cookie slightly with the bottom of a glass dipped in sugar or press out with your fingers and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake 375* for 7-9 min. or until set.

These freeze well and are a wonderful gift for others when wrapped individually.  Chocolate on the outside, peanut butter on the inside.  What could be better?  Well, maybe if it were caramel on the inside but that’s a recipe for another time.

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3 responses

  1. Karen S.

    I’ve always had such a fondness for Valentine’s day too. Your special celebrations with your family will always be meaningful memories. I just made some Valentine cards today for elderly friends, and am planning a special meal for that evening. Your cookies will be on a later menu–they look fabulous.

    February 12, 2013 at 5:05 pm

  2. They look yummy!

    February 12, 2013 at 10:35 pm

  3. Wayne

    Sandy, I enjoy reading about your special family moments and share your sentiments regarding Valentine’s Day. We usually have a family dinner at home…but are actually going out tonight since the kids are out at their activities. Thanks for the secret family recipe!

    February 14, 2013 at 6:20 pm

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