Peanut Butter Cookies

Over a month ago I won a big tub of Meridian peanut butter on Facebook. The prize has finally arrived the other day. When I opened it, the peanut butter looked almost liquid, it's a rather strange consistency and you can almost pour it rather than spread. I did buy Meridian peanut butter in smaller jars before, and don't remember it being so liquid.
It will be great for peanut-based sauces like satay, but perhaps not so much for a peanut butter and jam sandwich. Anyway, yesterday my dear husband asked if there were any cookies left from the batch I made a couple of days earlier (which was rather naive of him, as cookies don't last longer than a day here). And I decided to bake peanut butter cookies for an afternoon tea. I liked the sound of the peanut butter cookies and have cooked a variation of the recipe, swapping butter for margarine, honey for golden syrup and using a self-raising flour rather than plain.

Peanut butter cookies
50g caster sugar
50g demerara sugar
50g margarine (e.g.Flora light)
1 small egg
a pinch of sea salt
1tsp bicarbonate of soda (optional & unnecessary imo)
1tsp golden syrup
1tsp vanilla essence
200g smooth peanut butter
150g self-raising flour

Cream together the sugar with margarine, add an egg and keep beating. Add a pinch of salt, golden syrup, vanilla essence and peanut butter. The original recipe asked for 100g flour, but it looked like slops at that point, so I have added extra 50g.
Roll small balls of cookie dough and just flatten them with your fingers before placing on the foil in trays. You will need two trays for this amount of dough, or bake in batches. I did a little criss cross pattern on top of each cookies with a fork.
Bake in the oven preheated to 180C for about 14-15 minutes. The cookies will still be very soft when you take the trays out, let them cool before removing from the tray.
These cookies are lovely warm, with a cup of tea.

I did add a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda, but next time I use this recipe I will omit it. I know a lot of American bakers add the bicarb of soda in huge amounts, but I really don't like the taste. It might be my palate, but it gives a very distinct flavour to all the cookies and cakes. I'd rather use a baking powder, or if needed, pour some lemon juice over the bicarb of soda to get rid of that bitter after-taste.

Adding this recipe to Cheryl's #KitchenClearout linky, as I've been using the remains of the vanilla essence, golden syrup and the last of the demerara sugar in this recipe.