Thursday, December 3, 2009

Salted Peanut Chews- Cookie Exchange

The PTA meeting tomorrow includes a cookie exchange. As I prepare the budget and reimbursement checks, my mind is already thinking of an easy "bar" cookie that will cut into 36 bites. Try these Salted Peanut Chews. I think the original recipe was a Pillsbury Bake Off winner, but this version doesn't include any Pillsbury products.

Salted Peanut Chews

1/2 c butter or margarine, softened
2/3 c firmly packed brown sugar
2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 c flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda

3 cups miniature marshmallows

2/3 c corn syrup
1/4 c margarine or butter
1 package peanut butter chips (12 oz)
2 tsp vanilla

2 cups crisp rice cereal
2 cups salted peanuts

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine butter and sugar. Add in egg yolks. Add remaining dry ingredients except marshmallows and mix on low speed until crumbly. Press firmly in bottom of an ungreased 9x13 pan. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes or until light golden brown. Open oven and immediately sprinkle marshmallows over the top. Bake an additional 1-2 minutes or until marshmallows just begin to puff. Remove from oven and let cool while preparing topping.

In a large saucepan, over low heat, heat corn syrup, margarine, vanilla and peanut butter chips, just until chips are melted and mixture is smooth, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in cereal and peanuts. Immediately spoon warm topping over marshmallows. Spread as needed. Note: Spooning equally is better than trying to spread so you don't mess up the marshmallows. Refrigerate until firm. Cut into bars. Makes 36 bars.