It is- hands down- one of my all-time favorites in the cookie/bar category. It's right up there with the Peanut Blossoms. This recipe comes from my mothers recipe box (I can faintly recall what the recipe card looked like- and I think it was clipped out of some magazine from the 70's). This a "square" recipe that she made often when we were growing up- it definitely appeals to the kids with the PB&J theme- but I think I appreciate it even more as an adult. Why????
Well- it has the crumbly, peanut buttery crust of a peanut butter cookie- and then the sweet tartness of the jam- it really IS perfection!
Here it goes....
It seems like a lot of ingredients- I know- but it's actually very quick getting it all together...
Cream together the PB, sugars and shortening (shortening- I know it's not the healthiest thing going- but it gives the cookie part a nice crispy-chewy consistency)
then you add the egg, and scrape down the sides of the bowl
next, add the dry ingredients
once that's all nicely combined- reserve 1 cup (apx.) of the dough and dump the rest into your 13"x 9" pan
press it down evenly (I sprinkled some sugar on top to prevent my hands from sticking as I pressed)
then- select your jam- I went for an apricot-raspberry combo this time around!
spread it out evenly on top of the dough
then crumble the remaining dough on top and pop in the 350 degree oven!
I cook them for the exact recommended time- 21 min. They may seem a little doughy- but as they cool- they firm up! (They are not nearly as delish if they're over cooked)
Peanut Butter and Jelly Squares
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
11/4 cups flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup jam (I probably use a little more- I like mine really jammy;)
Combine shortening, peanut butter and sugars. Add egg, combine. Add flour, baking soda and baking powder. Once all ingredients are combined, press all but 1 cup of dough into an ungreased 13"x 9" baking pan Top with an even layer of jam. Crumble remaining 1 cup of dough over top. Bake at 350 degrees for 21 min. Cool and cut- enjoy!
Follow this link to see a March cookie-smackdown I was invited to enter- lots of yummy dessert ideas!