If you go searching for a peanut butter cookie recipe, Google may not be your friend. Type any combination of those words in and you'd better stand back, because you're going to come up with billions of hits, from corporate sites for the major peanut butter manufacturers to kids putting their mom's recipes on their MySpace pages.
It helps if you can narrow your search a bit before you even really begin looking. This is where some of the online cooking sites can be very useful. A lot of them offer user ratings, where people who have tried the recipes will give their opinions on the quality. It's always a good idea to check the comments on each recipe, too, as people will often post modifications they've made to the recipe, ways they've fixed things that were wrong with it or other ingredients they've added.
Cookbooks are another great source, but don't limit yourself to the major market publishers. Betty Crocker and Southern Living have great recipes, of course, but there is a whole world of other small-press cookbooks out there that you may have never explored. Just about every church, Junior League and Lions Club has put together a cookbook at one time or another, and cookie recipes are their stock in trade.
You may not even need to go out and buy these cookbooks, either, although you'd be supporting good causes if you did. Usually, local libraries have a good selection of the area cookbooks in their collections. Never thought of the library as a place to find a cookbook? You should! Cookbooks are reading and learning material just like literature and research books.
Of course, the best way to “find" a good peanut butter cookie recipe is to make your own. Start with the most basic recipe you can find and use your own cooking knowledge to work from there. Fortunately, peanut butter cookies are fairly inexpensive to put together, and you can make half or quarter batches of your basic dough while you're varying your ingredients and trying new things. You might find yourself to be quite the kitchen chemist!
Ann Marie Krause has been making cookies for over 30 years, at persent I am retired, for over 23 years I owned a Gourmet Bakery called The Cheese Confectioner. You can visit my site at http://www.annsgoodies.com
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