As a home baker, I love to bake from scratch. But every once in awhile, I like to take a short cut. Recently I came across a chocolate, peanut butter and jam cookie recipe while browsing on Pinterest. The original recipe called for the addition of semisweet chocolate chips, but I omitted them because I prefer the pure, unadulterated taste combination of peanut butter and strawberry jam.
When I was working in corporate America, I had the opportunity to take two six-week sabbatical breaks. During my second sabbatical, I volunteered part-time at my friend, Joyce’s wholesale bakery kitchen. One of the recipes I helped her and her partner, Tim, make were peanut butter cookies with a jam filling. Now to be honest, I love peanut butter, but I have never been a really big fan of peanut butter cookies. However when I tried Joyce’s PB&J cookies, I became a convert. The jam helped bring the taste of the cookies to another level.
So when I came across this recipe, it brought back memories of Joyce’s cookies. The best part about it? It was easy and tasted great. You need only three ingredients – a roll of sugar cookie dough (Pillsbury’s 16.5 oz size), peanut butter, and the jam of your choice. (I used strawberry).
The original recipe called for an 11 x 7 inch pan. Since I don’t have that exact sized pan, I used a 9 x 9 inch square instead.
You want to start out with a cold roll of cookie dough for easier handling. Slice off a quarter of the cookie dough and set aside. Tear off bits of dough from the three quarter portion, and press them into the bottom of the ungreased pan, using a little bit of flour to keep you hands from getting too sticky.
Once you’ve covered the entire bottom of the pan with dough, spread roughly one-half cup of peanut butter on top. I say roughly because I found it was easier to use a little bit more peanut butter to spread out over the larger pan I used. Otherwise you would have to spread the layer really thin and risk flaking off some of the cookie dough underneath. Besides, a little more peanut butter never hurts :0)
Next, spread roughly half a cup of jam over the pb layer. I actually prefer less jam to peanut butter ratio.
Take the remaining dough and tear off bits and pieces, crumbling them in your fingers as you sprinkle them over the jam, dotting the entire surface with dough.
Bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes, until the top is slightly golden brown. Cool pan on rack.
Slice and enjoy :0)