Mexican Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies are lightly sweet, crisp on the outside and soft inside. Masa harina gives them special and unique south of the border flavor.
Things are getting corny around here. One must have a tasty stack of cookies in the cookie jar. You deserve a treat after shucking a bushel of fresh corn. Plus a little something sweet after your Weekday Supper is a good thing.
How does one incorporate corn into cookies? Of course, corn syrup is an easy choice. I imagine pecan pie cookies or little bite-size tarts. There are more possibilities though. And no, creamed corn cookies are not on the horizon. The answer lies with masa harina.
What is masa harina? It’s corn flour. If you’ve ever had corn tortillas, you have eaten it. Field corn (maize) is dried, soaked and cooked in limewater, dried again, and ground into flour. Packaging will often have “Instant Corn Masa Flour” on it. Do not confuse it with corn starch (some countries call cornstarch corn flour). Cornmeal is a completely different thing too. While cornmeal is gritty, masa harina looks and feels like flour.
Mexican Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies are lightly sweetened. Main flavors are chocolate and peanut butter. Masa harina and a hint of cinnamon give them special south of the border flair. Sugar coating makes them crisp on the outside. The inside is soft and almost cake-like. Chopped lightly salted dry roasted peanuts bring in a dash of salt and crunch too.
It starts with one day and soon becomes a way of life. Sunday Supper extends into the week with Weekday Supper. Cooking and meals around the family table are very important. Sweetening the meal with dessert is a bonus. So bake cookies and share stories along with them too. Take a look at Mexican Chocolate Pepita Shortbread Cookies for another south of the border cookie (and a fun way to decorate them for Halloween or Day of the Dead).
Mexican Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar divided
- 1 large egg at room temperatures
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 6 tablespoons masa harina corn flour - see note
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup chopped lightly salted dry-roasted peanuts
- In a large bowl, cream butter, peanut butter, and 6 tablespoons sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add egg, egg yolk, and vanilla one at a time and beating well after each addition.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together all-purpose flour, masa harina, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and salt.
- Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture and beat until combined and dry ingredients are moistened.
- Stir in peanuts.
- Cover dough with plastic wrap. Chill dough at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Heat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick liners.
- Place remaining sugar on a small plate or in a shallow bowl.
- Scoop 1 heaping tablespoon of dough. Form into a ball. Roll ball in sugar to coat. Place ball on baking sheet.
- Repeat with remaining dough and placing balls 2 inches apart on baking sheets.
- Use the bottom of a 1-cup measure or glass to flatten balls to 2-inch rounds. You may need to dip the measure or glass in sugar between each to keep the dough from sticking to it.
- Bake 10 to 12 minutes, until middle of cookie is set.
- Cool cookies on baking sheet for 1 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Recipe adapted from Mexican Peanut Butter Cookies on The Star website.