Kiss Cookies, Two Ways

When I was growing up and made these peanut blossom cookies with my mom during the holiday season, we always used milk chocolate kisses–our only choice at the time. Now, dark chocolate kisses are available and, while it’s dark chocolate or bust for me, some family members and friends have let me know they prefer the old-fashioned milk chocolate kisses. Make both and everyone’s happy. (Recipe for the peanut butter kiss cookies here.)

Cookie Time: Peanut Blossoms and Butter Cookies

I don’t feel compelled to take risks when it comes to baking holiday cookies. Classic cookies are beloved because they’re perfect, like the roll-out butter cookie (I used a recipe from Bon Appetit) and peanut butter cookies with a chocolate kiss on top. We call them peanut blossoms in my family and they’ve been a perennial favorite since I was a kid. I have the fondest memories of baking them with my mom and helping to push the chocolate kiss on the cookie while it was still on the cookie sheet. Eating them right from the oven is always best, when the chocolate is still gooey from the heat of the oven (pictured, Kristine and Rebecca digging in). I make them with a mixture of dark chocolate and milk chocolate kisses. The recipe from mom, which came to her from Aunt Ruth, is below.

Peanut Blossom Cookies

Makes 7 dozen

1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup unsalted butter
2 eggs
1/4 cup milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
Chocolates kisses

Preheat oven at 375 F.
Cream together sugars, butter and peanut butter.
Stir in eggs, milk and vanilla.
Sift together flour, salt and baking soda.
Combine dry and wet ingredients.
Shape into balls and roll in sugar.
Place balls on ungreased cookie sheet, leaving an inch between each ball.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and press on chocolate kisses, then return to oven for 1 minute.