I love holiday cookies, but I don’t love all the rolling and cutting. Not long ago I realized I didn’t have to roll and cut. That I could just press my dough into two big rounds and bake them, cutting a peek-a-boo round out of one cookie so when I sandwiched them together you could see the contrasting filling.
So when you get that inevitable urge to bake this season but shy away because you don’t think you have time, make one big cookie instead. I offer Big, Fat Peanut Butter & Jelly Cookies. (And if you do like rolling and cutting, you can!)
- 1 large egg
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1½ cups bleached all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup peanuts, finely ground
- Generous ½ cup seedless strawberry jam
- Confectioner’s sugar for dusting
- Adjust oven racks to upper and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 325 degrees.
- Beat egg, vanilla, and salt in a small bowl. Beat butter and sugar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy. Add egg mixture; mix on low speed until well incorporated. Add flour; mix on low speed until dough forms; halve into 2 equal portions.
- Spray two baking sheets with vegetable cooking spray. Press each dough portion into a 10-inch circle on one of the baking sheets. Using a 2½-inch round cutter remove center from one of the dough circles. Bake until golden brown, 20 to 23 minutes, rotating sheets after 15 minutes. Let cookies stand in pan until firm but still slightly pliable, about 2 minutes. Using an offset spatula, loosen and lift cookies from pans to wire racks to cool to room temperature.
- Up to several hours before serving, spread jam over bottom cookie, top with cut-out cookie. Dust with confectioner’s sugar, if you like. Serve.
Since you may be using your food processor to grind nuts, you can also make this dough in the food processor.
You can bake the cut-out circle (it’s what I call “the cook’s taste”) on the same sheet as one of the bigger cookies, keeping in mind the shorter baking time.