Out of the oven, Baked's peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies are delicious. Balanced. Creamy. Nutty. Simultaneously sweet and salty. Thin but not too thin. Pretty much the prototypical peanut butter/chocolate cookie.
But if it were up to me, these cookies would never even make it into the oven. As dough, this recipe is transcendent.
I'm not actually a big spoon-licker. A taste here and there, sure, maybe. But I grew up with a slight instilled fear of raw eggs and the knowledge that the more dough I ate before the oven, the fewer cookies I'd probably be allowed later, so I tend to taste sparingly. So it's saying something that this recipe had me practically stuffing the whole paddle of the KitchenAid into my mouth, the better to make sure not even a single granule of this batter got rinsed down the drain.
Given how much I sampled before baking, it's even more of a wonder just how many cookies I got out of this recipe: an easy four dozen, and that's after making the last 12 mutant-sized simply so I would be sure to use up all the dough. The cookies are fabulous to taste — though honestly, I think they're better before baking — but they're also gorgeous to look at: crackly in all the right places, crisp ridges hinting at the subtle gooey-ness inside.
If I make these again — and oh, I'll make them again, but only when I have a crowd to feed — I'll use only milk chocolate for the chunks. Yes, that's what the Baked guys say in the recipe. Yes, I should have learned to listen by now. But even though they warned that dark chocolate would taste bitter against the peanut butter, I still mixed half-milk, half-dark into the dough. That gave me a chance to taste the two side-by-side, and they were right: If I hadn't had the milk chocolate to compare to, the dark would have been fine, but the milk just works better, and this is coming from someone who really can't stand milk chocolate.
Not that the chocolate's even necessary. The peanut butter flavor is just perfect on its own.
Seriously, you'll want to lick that spoon.