Soft and Chewy Chocolate & Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

DSCN9413I am not a sweet tooth.  If you sat me down in front of a slice of cake and a plate of raw vegetables, I would almost always reach straight for the veggies.  But I have a dirty little secret.

In honor of St Valentine’s Day, we thought we would make something that not only we love, but so does pretty much everyone else in the world, guaranteed.  One of our followers actually requested these heavenly treats a while back so we thought, even though every day is the right day to make chocolate chip cookies, Valentine’s Day is just perfect.

And then we went and made it even better.  I’m sure you all know the famous and overly delicious Reese’s peanut butter cups.  Well, if chocolate chip cookies make my day, I can’t even explain how much I love peanut butter cups!  What sort of genius thought of not only putting peanut butter together with chocolate, but actually enclosing it in a little chocolate tartlet.  Mr. Reese did!

We contemplated making peanut butter cookies and adding chocolate chips to them, but when we came across the actual Reese’s Peanut Butter Chips [something close to miraculous in Italy], we simply couldn’t resist.  This way, you get the joy of biting into a classic chocolate chip cookie, but with the hidden surprise of a little burst of peanut butter.  Just the thought makes me tingle!

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Guess what, for those of you already taking your pens out to add an extra 2 hour workout to your daily schedule, here’s a little secret.  Instead of margarine, or butter, we used extra virgin olive oil.  Replacing butter with olive oil reduces the percentage of fat in the cookies by a whole 25%.  That’s huge! So stop worrying about your waist lines and let’s get baking!

INGREDIENTS
3/4 cups caster sugar
3/4 cups packed brown sugar
3/4 cups extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp vanilla (if you’re using vanilla paste, use ½ tsp at most)
2 large eggs
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 ½ cups chocolate chips
1 ½ cups peanut butter chips (the more the better!)

METHOD
Preheat your oven to 180˚C.
In a large bowl, mix the sugars and the olive oil until smooth.  You want to avoid any big lumps of sugar in your cookies. Beat in the vanilla and the eggs until well blended.
In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking soda and salt.  Simplify the mixing process by adding these to the mixture about a cup at a time.  Mixing in all the flour by hand requires a strong forearm and shoulder!
Stir in the chocolate chips and peanut butter chips.
Using a tablespoon, drop the cookie dough on an ungreased cookie sheet about 3-4 cm apart.
Depending on how chewy you want them, bake for 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown.

The result: chewy perfection.

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