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  • Mary Kay

Marj's Ritz Candy Cookies are an easy standby


My Mother-in-law shared these delicious sandwiched Ritz Peanut Butter Cookies at family gatherings every Christmas.

These cute little cookies were always accompanied her homemade Norwegian treats like krumkake, sandbakkels, and her wonderful lefse. She had a large round flat covered partitioned Tupperware container filled with all the treats. And, by the time she left in the evening they had all disappeared, a real tribute to her delicious baking.


That’s what I miss about the Christmas holiday. With our Moms and Grandmas gone, those special treats do not appear unless I make them. So, I still bake and construct our favorite recipes from scratch each year, including this recipe. I usually make a half recipe for just the two of us – and freeze some of them for later indulgences. Or, I make double or triple recipes to give as gifts for special people. The baking and eating certainly do bring back warm memories.

Marj’s cookies combined peanut butter sandwiched between two Ritz crackers then dipped in white candy chips. She liked to make them with white chips since she was allergic to chocolate and wanted to enjoy some of the Christmas treats like everyone else.


They are easy for kids to make, too! Provide the kids with little hors de oeuvre knives and spread a little creamy peanut butter between two round Ritz crackers. Refrigerate them for about 20 minutes so the peanut butter hardens a little to make them easier for dipping in the hot chips. In the meantime, melt your white “chocolate” chips, bark or candy melts. Dip them and let them dry on parchment paper. She always sprinkled them with green and red sugars.


This is an easy recipe to change regarding the quantity of sandwich cookies you want to end up with. If you don’t any leftover crackers, just use one or two sleeves of them out of the box and leave all the rest sealed in their wrappers. Of course, the quantity of crackers in a sleeve will vary depending on the size box you purchase. It’s easy enough to adjust the amount of peanut butter you need. Just scoop it out of the pb jar with a knife – no need to measure. And, for the melting candies, heat up a cup at a time to keep any waste to a minimum. Of course the melting candies are easy to keep since they harden and you can simply cover with some plastic wrap for your next bake or make project.

This recipe makes 30 sandwich cookies.


Prep your pan:

Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper.


Ingredients:

60 Ritz crackers (2 sleeves of cookies)

1 C Peanut Butter, creamy

2 – 3 C White melting chips

Holiday sprinkles of your choice


Sandwich your cookies:

- Heat up the candy melts in a microwave safe bowl according to the package instructions. Sometimes Marj used white “chocolate” chips and other times she used the melting candies. It just depended on which one was a better buy that season. She was great for finding the best deals.

- Spread about one teaspoon of peanut butter on half of the crackers. No need to measure, just spread. Some people like it thick, some like it spread a little lighter.

- Top each peanut butter cracker with another cracker to make a cute little sandwich.

- Freeze or refrigerate the sandwich cookies for 10-20 minutes so the peanut butter becomes somewhat firm. This keeps the peanut butter from causing the crackers to slide around when coating them in the hot melted candy.

- Use a couple of forks, turning the cookie so every side gets coated in the candy melts.

- Balancing the cookie on one fork, use the other fork to scrape excess candy off the bottom of the cookie, and let excess candy coating drip off the top and sides, too.

- Neatly drop each cookie on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet. If there is a lot of candy melt pooling at the base of the cookies, you may need to let more drip off and scrape off the bottom. Or, maybe you like all that candy melt pooled at the base of the cookies – it’s your cookie.

- You may need to reheat the candy melts if it gets too thick while coating the cold sandwich cookies.

- Sprinkle your holiday sugars on top before the candy coating dries.

- When you have the cookie sheet filled, slide it into the refrigerator to quickly solidify the melted candy coating.


Making and decorating options:

- If you don’t like peanut butter, spread a chocolate hazelnut spread in between the crackers. Freeze them and coat with your choice of chocolate, white or other colors of the candy melts. Yum!

- If you don’t like chocolate or peanut butter, just dip the individual crackers in the white candy melt and decorate for a holiday treat.

- Pipe colored homemade frosting on top of the dried coating in decorative designs.

- Create faces with sugar eyeballs and string licorice smiles before the coating dries. You could have these items set up ahead of time so you can get them decorated quickly.

- Make cute little reindeer heads out of the sandwich crackers by inserting the ends of broken pieces of small pretzels between the crackers into the peanut butter to depict antlers. Add a couple tiny sugar eyeballs. Cut a tiny triangle shaped piece of black licorice below the eyes for a nose. Have the decorations set up ahead of time so you get them decorated before the candy coating dries.


Have fun with the kids while making and decorating these cookies during the Holidays, and “Bake your own Memories!”

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