Remember how last month I said my oven broke? Well I got my oven fixed and went on a baking blitz. Quick bread, cakes, cinnamon rolls, clafouti, and lots of bread. You don’t realize how much you love something until it’s gone. In the midst of all of this baking, I realized how much I love and have missed not only my oven, but the joy of baking. I used to bake all the time. I think a lot of us get our start in baking as kids. I encourage my own kids to help with the baking more than the cooking because it’s safer. Pour in some ingredients, stir them up, and the only exposure to heat is a quick oven door opening and closing. The danger is minimal to little wandering hands and curious minds. (Let’s count how many times I use the word ‘baking’ in this post.)
Funny enough, it’s when I had my first child that baking became a luxury and even an annoyance for a time. I was working, a first time mom, barely holding it together, and so baking wasn’t something I had time for. Plus I really struggled to loose the baby weight with my first one, and so things like carbs and sweets were outlawed in the name of fitting into my old pants.
It’s been fun to reconnect to my first love again. These cookies were born during this reconnection. My husband and I both like having layers of flavors. Things that are just sugar aren’t tempting. I don’t like chess bars, or sugar cookies or really anything that is overly sweet. It’s ok if you like them, to each their own. But we like different kinds of flavors wrapped up in one package. Spicy and salty, sweet and spicy.
I wanted a cookie that wasn’t just sweet, but a bit savory and salty as well. Though it may seem odd to throw some pretzels in your cookie dough, trust me, it ups the crunch and flavor to a basic cookie dough. Then you add some choclate, peanut butter and caramel, oh man, these one of a kind cookies are good and a nice change from your basic chocolate chip.
Stuffed Sweet & Salty Cookies
3/4 cup butter room temperature
1/4 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 1/2 cups Flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups peanut butter chips
1 1/4 cups crushed pretzel rods
approximately 30 chocolate rolos
In a plastic bag, place your pretzel rods. You want the thick ones, they add a better bite to your cookie. The skinny ones tend to disappear in the dough. Using a heavy object (I used my metal measuring cup), beat the daylights out of those pretzel rods until they are broken up in to nice chunky pieces.
In a stand mixer, using a paddle attachment, mix together butter and shortening until combined, scraping the sides with a spatula if needed.
Add sugars, and cream together until light, again scraping the sides with a spatula if needed.
These aren’t finicky cookies, so you can dump the flour, salt and baking soda right in, and then mix on a low speed so as not to upset the flour and send it flying all over the place.
Once the dry ingredients have been incorporated, add peanut butter chips, and pretzels in, and stir in manually with a spoon or spatula. Set the dough aside for 15-20 minutes, preferably in the fridge. This allows the ingredients in the dough to stick to each other, instead of to your hands.
Pre-heat oven to 375 F. Take a good bit of dough, place a rolo in the middle, and roll the dough around it. You want just enough dough to cover the chocolate.
Place stuffed dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and bake for 8-10 minutes until the cookies are golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before serving. Hot molten caramel in no one’s friend.
(Recipe is loosely based on Better Homes & Garden’s Chocolate Chip cookies)