Recipe: Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies

Back at my old job, my friend (and coworker at the time) Matt brought in some chocolate chip peanut butter cookies into the office a few months back. They were pretty yummy—the cookies were soft and full of peanut flavor. I recently asked Matt for the recipe and he was gracious enough to mention that I could share it as well:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup sugar (set aside in a small bowl for in which to roll the cookies later)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup creamy (or chunky) peanut butter [I used Skippy Natural creamy peanut butter when I made a batch recently and that seemed to work out pretty well. —Ashley]
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) of unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 c. flour
  • 12 oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375°

  2. Combine sugar (just the first cup), brown sugar, butter, peanut butter, baking soda, vanilla extract, and eggs in a large mixing bowl.

  3. Add the flour about ½ cup at a time. This makes it easier to mix by hand, but it also helps you achieve the right dough consistency. You want the dough to be as moist as possible, while still peeling cleanly off your finger. Much dryer than that and the cookies will be cakey. Not dry enough, and they'll be too doughy.

  4. Mix in the chocolate chips.

  5. Using a small spoon, scoop out little clumps of dough and roll them in the small bowl of sugar you set aside. Place the dough balls on a cookie sheet (no need to grease it).

  6. Bake each batch for 8–10 minutes. You want to take them out just before they look done and let them continue to bake outside of the oven on the hot cookie sheet for a few minutes.

These are probably my favorite chocolate chip peanut butter cookies and I’ll definitely be making these again. Om nom nom.

Oh, and on a side note, while I normally go for just-peanuts peanut butter (the kind with “Peanuts, salt” as its only ingredients), I’ve learned that most recipes that call for peanut butter usually do so under the assumption that you’ll use pre-sweetened peanut butter. So, if you’re buying peanut butter that you plan to use in a baked good (such as cookies), I’d recommend buying one that includes sugar among its ingredients. (And though its name may imply otherwise, Skippy’s Natural line does include sugar.)

In-Car Autocross Video

In the days leading up to my autocross on Saturday, I got to thinking that it could be fun to try recording some in-car footage with my Kodak Zi8. After thinking about it for a bit, I decided on using my Gorillapod SLR-Zoom to attach the camera to my passenger-side headrest:

The video worked out better than I had hoped. The wind noise was a bit more than I had expected, but maybe I’ll try getting (or making) a wind muff or the like for next time. And, if it’s of interest, I’ve also posted a few photos of how I set up the Gorillapod to attach the camera to my car’s passenger-side headrest.

Update 7/25: I’ve also scanned a copy of the drivers’ map for the autocross (PDF, 1.2 MB). You may also notice some hand-drawn arrows weaving through each of the slaloms. Drivers are allowed to go through the slaloms in either direction (whether Left-Right-Left or Right-Left-Right) and once I figured out which of those would offer a smoother line, I drew in those arrows to remind myself of the path I had wanted to take.

Photos from SXSW 2010

Andrew Huff Enjoying a Shiner

SXSW Interactive apparently had over 12,000 attendees this year, more than this year’s SXSW Music. And I still had just as much fun this year as I’ve had any year. It was great.

Once again, Grant Hutchinson helped organize a “Found Type Photowalk” around Austin. Ostensibly, it’s about typography—and there is quite a bit of typography talk—but it’s also a fantastic mid-conference respite where photographers of all types can enjoy a leisurely walk around Austin while taking shots along the way.

I brought along my trusty Canon 40D and it held up pretty well. If anything, the one thing I noticed is that even an image-stabilized lens (like the 17–55mm f/2.8 IS that I was mostly using) can’t save every shot—several of my shots during panels ended up around 1/13sec (at ISO 400) and shots that slow just don’t have a great chance of coming out sharp. (I could have theoretically bumped up the ISO to 800 or 1600, but my 2007-era doesn’t do that well at high ISOs.) Maybe I’ll consider Canon’s rumored 60D if that comes out in time for next year?

I wouldn’t be surprised if there might be even more attendees next year. And that’s okay. I’ve made so many great friends at SXSW over the years and I wouldn’t miss the chance to hang out with them again.

Review: Review: Clash of the Titans (2010)

Louis Leterrier took to the director’s chair for Clash of the Titans, a remake of the 1981 film of the same name. Given that Leterrier has done some halfway decent films (such as the first two Transporter movies), I was cautiously optimistic going into the theater.

My review gets more into it, but the short of it is that I would generally concur with Metacritic’s score of 39 (“Generally unfavorable reviews”). Actually, scratch that, I would have to slightly disagree with Metacritic’s score—if only to the extent that even 39 might be a little too generous.

Review: Clash of the Titans (2010) from A. Bischoff on Vimeo.

Review: From Paris with Love

From Paris with Love is a new action movie starring John Travolta and Jonathan Rhys Meyers. To get right down to it, I had a fun time and I rather liked it. In fairness though, I’ll also point out that it currently has a score of 42 at Metacritic (which equates to “mixed or average reviews”).

If you like action movies, I think it could be worth a shot.

Review: From Paris with Love from Alex Bischoff on Vimeo.