Peanut Butter Crinkles & A Story…

As you all know, I’ve had a great time recently cooking from my grandmother’s recipe book. So imagine my excitement when I got a package in the mail from Kimmie over at Full Circle with a wonderful hand-written note (rare in itself these days) AND a copy of her great grandmother’s recipe book full of Southern Louisiana classics. After seeing all the fun I’d had of late making my grandmother’s meatloaf and cherry snowballs, Kimmie assumed (correctly) that I would love to catch a glimpse of her family’s history as told through food.

As soon as I saw Southern Louisiana, I knew I’d be encountering a lot of dishes that involved sugar and more sugar with a side of Southern hospitality and I was right. In her note to me, Kimmie wrote “There is nothing fancy or cutting edge about these recipes and most are sure to you give you a heart attack but they were made with soul and love throughout many generations in the South.” Now I don’t know about you, but that’s simply deep-fried music to my ears.

I knew I had to start by baking great grandmother Verda’s Peanut Butter Crinkles. I’m not sure why I had to begin with this recipe, maybe because it called for white sugar and brown sugar or maybe it was the jam in the middle or maybe I could just sense this was a perfect cookie for eating amongst friends.

These Peanut Butter Crinkles are absolutely wonderful. They are soft and crumbly with the slightest crunch that is neutralized by the jam in the middle. Accompanied with a cup of tea, they are perfect for an afternoon of catching up with old friends or sharing stories with new friends.

Peanut Butter Crinkles (From the Kitchen of Verda Baker)

My comments are in italics

  • 1 cup of margarine (I asked Kimmie why margarine was used rather than butter. Margarine was more commonly used because it was  less expensive)
  • 1 cup of peanut butter (I used chunky peanut butter. I figured it would give it some additional texture)
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • sugar
  • nuts, chocolate kisses (I used walnuts and chocolate chips)
  • jam or jelly (I used mainly strawberry jam, but I did experiment with fig jam and lemon jelly and all three complimented the peanut butter exceptionally well)
  1. In bowl with mixer at medium speed, beat first 6 ingredients until fluffy.
  2. At low speed, beat in next 3 ingredients.
  3. Shape into 1″ balls; roll in sugar. (Makes approximately 48 cookies)
  4. Place 2″ apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
  5. Bake in 350F oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until browned. (For me at least, 12 minutes was the perfect amount of time in the oven)
  6. Immediately press nuts or candies into cookies or press with thumb and fill with jam. (I put nuts in half of them and chocolate chips in the other half. As I mentioned earlier, I used mainly strawberry jam, but I’m convinced any jam would work wonders with these cookies, so experiment!)
  7. Cool.

Kimmie, thanks again for sharing your family’s treasure with me. Have a seat and let’s have a Peanut Butter Crinkle or three.

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27 Comments

Filed under Friends, Louisiana, Peanut butter, Peanut Butter Crinkles

27 responses to “Peanut Butter Crinkles & A Story…

  1. I’m assuming the place setting with two cookies is for me. =) And what a perfect backdrop to sit down and share stories – the snow in the yard is stunning. I know, I know, it has probably lost its excitement for you. I’ll provide the excitement for the both of us if you provide the cookies.

    They turned out gorgeous and I am so happy to share our family’s recipes with you. Granny would be proud and I know Poppop would have a seat and share a tale or two. These are some of his favorites!

    • Tastes Better With Friends

      Of course the two cookie plate is for you. The snow setting is nice but you’re right, I can do without it.
      I’m so glad I did your cookies proud and I’d love to hear some tales from Poppop!

  2. Oh I love this! Me and my Grandma used to make all kinds of variations on this – she called them drop cookies because you “dropped” the jam into the indent but I think they’re more commonly called “thumbprints”. My job was always to drop the jam in the middle :). Then she stored them in big 4L ice cream pails in the freezer. Thanks for the memory!
    ps. I make a great version with chocolate chunks in the dough and nutella dropped in the middle. mmm 😉

    • Tastes Better With Friends

      Thanks for sharing your memory and your ps is awesome!

    • I love that you stored them in the freezer too! Granny always did, just in case someone dropped in unexpected! =)

      I will definitely try the nutella addition, it might be just the recipe needed for me to try nutella for the first time.

  3. I love cooking with my grandma, she is the biscuit queen, although she has never made anything like this (possibly cause she is no fan of the PB), she prefers kiss cakes and coconut cherry slice. Mmm, but these look good, it’s like a peanut butter and jam sandwich in a biscuit!!

  4. I just love old family recipes… Love that you are trying out the recipes from Kimmie’s family. These cookies look tasty! I can’t wait to se what other treats from Louisianna you decide to try!

  5. J-anonymous

    I so wish my grandma had left a cookbook. Well, thinking of her cooking, maybe not. I absolutely love cooking out of old community and synagogue cookbooks and have begun doing that from the ones I nabbed from my mom’s cupboard. These peanut butter crinkles look and sound fabulous! Just my kind of cookies!

  6. Half asleep here. The last comment was from me!

  7. I like recipes like this with a little bit of history to them. They look like they were fun to make…but I bet they’re even more fun to eat!!

  8. Very sweet story! Love the history too. Unfortunately I never has the opportunity to cook with either of my grandmothers as they passed away when i was young. Great memories for you

  9. Recipes are always made better when there are made with love and passed down through generations. These would be perfect with my daily afternoon cup of tea (they haven’t been able to beat the Canadian out of me yet).

  10. don’t you just love recipes w/a story? i think they’re the best one – and these little gems are near perfect as they come!

  11. Thanks for sharing another great recipe, Ethan! So, have you had sweet tea yet? If not, you may have to put that on your list… and a trip to the dentist.

  12. These cookies sound wonderful. I’m a little jealous of all the grandmother recipes you now have. Both of my grandmothers lived on the other side of the world. Some of their recipes are in my parents heads, but it’s not the same. Thankfully I can now come to your blog for some great grandma recipes!

  13. This is a great way to keep these traditional recipes alive. But I gotta say. What’s all that white stuff outside the window? GREG

  14. Peanut butter and jam are a magical combo! If we were neighbors I’d totally invite myself over for one of these! I’d bring a treat in exchange of course…
    Thank you for sharing this recipe with us. 🙂 I hope you are having a good start to the week!

  15. There is something so special about old handed down cookbooks. I have my grandmother’s old birthday cake, in all its 1950s technicolor glory. Those cookies look delicious – bit of crunch and chewiness. Will have to try them, but I have an aversion to margarine, so it will have to be butter for me!

  16. Meant to say birthday cake book, as if I still had her cake would not be looking too good…she died about 25 years ago.

    • Tastes Better With Friends

      I had a forgot the word “book”. Although, there’s a great Seinfeld episode where Elaine eats a 19th century cake, so you never know.

  17. I cannot tell you how excited I am to try one of these later today. Finally I have my appetite back and I am sure that these will help with dizziness and nausea, right? 😉 SO SORRY to have missed you in Toronto last weekend but we will meet soon, promise!

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