The summer holidays roll on as we roll in and out of London, chasing sunshine and open spaces whilst enjoying some downtime with my boys. I'm loving it! Kitchen time has become about entertaining friends and families, parties and cheeky treats - the best kind, really.
I acquired a couple of mini skillet pans recently in a store sale and have been itching to use them so when I found out it was National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day yesterday, I whipped out the pans and we made cookies. Okay, you're going to have to forgive me for being a day late posting this but I promise you, they are super moreish and worth the wait! You can, of course, use different sized skillets but you need to ensure that the handles of your pan can go in the oven and also that you adjust the baking time a little if you use larger or smaller pans.
There are three very important things to remember that contribute to the success of these cookies:
- If you eat all the cookie dough BEFORE it goes into the skillet, there is minimal chance of a baking success
- If you're greedy and over-fill the skillets to achieve monumental cookies, the dough kind of tips over the side of the pan and drops off leaving a not so visually stunning (but still deliciously yummy) cookie
- If you're planning to remove them from the skillet before eating, lightly spray them with a bake release to help them come out post baking (a step I often forget!)
You can use chocolate chips in these cookies, but I chopped up a 150g bar of Green and Black's chocolate with a knife and I kind of like the uneven chocolate chunks it produces. Of course you can use whatever chocolate you like, but I think that a good quality one is better in these cookies and pairs beautifully with the rock salt sprinkled over the top once baked.
I use smooth peanut butter but a crunchy one would also be perfect and add an extra bite to the texture. The peanut butter is incredibly delicious in these cookies and I really love the flavour and texture it yields.
We find them amazing straight from the oven. The chocolate chips are gooey and leave chocolate stained mouths -- the sure sign of a delicious eat! They are quite fragile so if you're eating them straightaway, probably just dig in straight from the pan. Otherwise, allow them to cool a little and gently pry the sides away with a spatula and carefully lift them out. They will still be pretty fragile.
If you want to produce a complete showstopper (I promise you your friends will thank you very kindly for this) I can totally recommend a scoop of ice cream and a a drizzle of caramel sauce. If you want to make a homemade caramel, I suggest the one in this recipe here but feel free to cheat and store-bought caramel is perfect (shhhh, I won't tell if you won't).
You could, of course, save this recipe for National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day next year but do you really want to wait another 365 days??!
Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookies
adapted from Donna Hay's Salted Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes around 4-6 cookies, based on a 5 square inch mini skillet
- 175G UNSALTED BUTTER
- 225G PLAIN FLOUR
- 1 TSP BICARB OF SODA
- 140G SOFT BROWN SUGAR
- 100G CASTER SUGAR
- 1 EGG
- 1 TSP VANILLA EXTRACT
- 160G PEANUT BUTTER (smooth or crunchy, as you prefer)
- 150G DARK CHOCOLATE BAR, CHOPPED
- 2 TBSP ROCK SALT
You will also need at least 1 mini skillet - mine was a 5 square inch skillet
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees (fan)
- Melt the butter and put to one side
- Place all the dry ingredients in a large bowl (the flour, bicarb of soda, brown sugar and caster sugar) and stir to combine
- Add the wet ingredients (egg, vanilla, melted butter and peanut butter) and mix thoroughly
- Finally add to chopped chocolate and stir until evenly distributed
- Give your skillets a light spray with oil or bake release (particularly important if you plan to remove them from the skillet post-baking)
- Take a chunk of cookie dough and press it with your fingers into the skillet until it comes up to half-way -- don't be tempted to over-fill the pan as the cookie will burst over the sides during cooking!
- Bake for around 15-20 minutes - you want the top of the cookie to be golden brown, the outside of the cookie to be set and the centre a little soft
- Remove from the oven and sprinkle them with the sea salt
- Eat immediately from the skillet or leave to cool for around 15 minutes before removing from the pan
- They're perfect just as they are, but amazing dressed up with ice cream, sauce and sprinkles :)