Oh. My. Goodness. These were SO good! I love peanut butter, and I've probably had peanut butter on wheat bread (minus the jelly) 4 days a week for the past year. So it only follows that these would be amazing to me. I spent weeks dreaming about making them. :) Now that I finally have, I can tell you it's definitely worth it! And it's not too difficult a recipe either.
Brown Bag Cookies
adapted from Cookie Baker Lynn
original recipe found here
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temp
3/4 cups sugar
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 extra-large egg, at room temp
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 cups blackberry jam (mine was Trader Joe's brand)
1/2 cups salted peanuts, coarsely chopped (accidentally used unsalted)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9 x 9-inch square baking pan.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light yellow, about 2 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the vanilla, eggs, and peanut butter and mix until well combined.
Sift together into a small bowl the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the flour mixture to the peanut butter mixture. Mix just until combined.
Spread two thirds of the dough in the prepared pan, using a knife to spread it evenly. Spread the jam evenly over the dough. Drop small globs of the remaining dough evenly over the jam. Don't worry if all the jam isn't covered; the dough will spread when it bakes. Sprinkle with the chopped peanuts (I chopped them using a food processor) and bake about 45 minutes, until golden brown. Cool and cut into 16 squares.
The biggest change I made was obviously using the white whole wheat flour. I was a little worried that the taste would be too strong (the batter tasted surprisingly wheat-y) but once baked you couldn't even tell I'd used wheat flour. Also, I added a little cinnamon because I love cinnamon & pb together...my favorite combo.
One comment about the instructions...I think because I used the wheat flour, my batter was a little thicker, and I kind of had to spread the second layer of batter on top of the jam. It definitely wouldn't have flattened out on its own for me like it says in the original recipe. But it wasn't difficult to just spread it out instead.
Best of all, these get better with time...I think the jam & the peanut butter merge & get even softer as they sit. I really really loved them the second day. And of course, they were also loved by all (even the first day). :) Definitely a winning recipe!