It was late one night - my danger time is around 10pm. I know I should brush my teeth before then and not be tempted by things but it's always around then that I get very peckish. After quite some years I've figured out that I like something to crunch on a bit late at night just before bed (I've always feared going to bed hungry, I don't think I ever have, much the opposite given my late night snacking activities). That night it was cold and I was nursing a hot chocolate and all I wanted was a cookie to dunk in it.
See you can be truly lazy and stir it with the same knife that you used to get the peanut butter out of the jar!
I've always been the obsessive type. My shoe collection is a case in point - who really needs over 100 pairs of shoes when you really don't out _that _much? My obsessiveness extended to these cookies. I used up more than half a jar of peanut butter trying to get these just right. I first started with trying to make a white chocolate, oatmeal and cranberry cookie (inspired by the Donna Hay cookie mix) but found that oatmeal was a hard ingredient to microwave dry in order to get the correct texture. Four attempts were made and then suitably humiliated, I regrouped and came back with a sugar cookie.
However that wasn't quite indulgent enough and the unloved jar of peanut butter in my pantry beckoned to me (bought by Mr NQN when I was away in Austria so that he could subsist on sandwiches and not starve to death). Do you ever get those moments when things just present themselves to you? It happens to me often, multiple times daily and I usually listen to these cues. I was given the Hershey's Kisses from a friend but sadly I'm not a huge fan of them (although the cinnamon chips are another matter and another obsession) but I hate things going to waste to I decided to use them in this recipe. You could of course replace them with regular chocolate chips although they do go wonderfully in these cookies.
A disaster cookie!
This recipe required a few attempts and most of the trial and error lay in the microwave cooking time and the amount of butter and temperature of the butter. Like the 5 minute chocolate mug cake and the 5 minute cheesecake, timing is absolutely crucial when it comes to microwave cooking. My microwave is a medium powered one but if yours is a strong one, "bake" it in 30 second bursts. You may even have to discard the first one as that one often ends up burnt (just while you are testing out your microwave). Once perfected, the end result is a crunchy deliciously good cookie. I think I gained significant weight trying these out to perfect them (I think in total close to a dozen attempts were made) but I think this could be close to the ideal 5 minute cookie recipe. Or you tell me ;)
So tell me Dear Reader, do you like easy and fast or challenging recipes?
The 5 Minute Peanut Butter & Chocolate Chip Cookie
An Original Recipe by Not Quite Nigella
Makes 1 single cookie
1 tablespoon butter
1.5 tablespoon white sugar (it will give it more crunch than caster or superfine sugar)
2-3 teaspoons peanut butter (approximately, I used a knife I admit)
1/3 to 1/2 of a beaten egg
2 tablespoons plain flour
tiny pinch of salt
small dash of vanilla extract
3 Hershey's Kisses
Step 1 - Melt the butter in the microwave on short 20 second 50% bursts so that it is not sizzling but merely just melted. Mix this along with the rest of the ingredients in a bowl. Line a plate with a square of parchment. Shape the dough into a cookie shape and place on the parchment.
Ok not attractive...
Step 2 - The microwave time is always the tricky part as each microwave is different. Mine isn't particularly powerful so I cooked it on 100% power for 60 seconds-you can eat it now if you like the softer texture. I like a crispy cookie so I microwaved it on 100% for another 30 seconds. The chocolate is the part that may burn from cooking it too long so just be careful not to put it infor too long. Leave to cool for a few minutes as it will continue to cook upon cooling. Meanwhile while it cools, make yourself a hot chocolate or a cup of tea or coffee. I prefer these after they have rested for 10 minutes or so but I realise that this means that you may have to wait for what may seem to be an inordinate time.