I was only about 10-12 years old when my mom’s elder sister taught her how to do this cookies. That’s like 30 years ago.
Back then, we did not even have electric oven and used to bake Chinese New Year goodies using charcoal fire.
Today, long after my mom had passed on, my two elder sisters and I still continue to bake this peanut cookies during Chinese New Year. The recipe that we got from our auntie was a very simple one – one catty (about 600gms) of flour, peanuts and sugar and a bowl of lard. (yeah, cholesterol was a foreign word back then)
I bought the groundnuts (smaller sizes type, don’t use Shandong ones) and fry them myself. Just put the nuts without any oil into a wok and fry over very low fire until they are brown. One can buy pre-grinded peanuts but I prefer to buy the groundnuts because I can pick out the diseased ones. Do you know that fungus on rotten peanuts can cause liver cancer? So, be picky when you buy peanut butter. Opt for those with more stringent quality/better brands.
These are all the ingredients I used. Mazola corn oil, Pilsbury all purpose flour, sugar and the peanuts which I had grind with my grinder (come with blender). My cheeky toddler knows that I am taking photos for ‘the computer’ and insist I take his photo.
After mixing all the above, I just roll the mixture into little balls. My other son helped me to imprint the little circles on the top with the back end of a pen. (cleaned of course) Glaze them with egg and off to the oven.
I used 600 grams groundnuts and yielded four containers of cookies plus those that my sons have gobbled up. All in, I get about 5 containers. The cost is very low as the groundnuts only cost RM4 and the sugar, oil and flour costs are negligible. However, if you want to buy from the market, each container usually costs between RM10-RM14.
The fun my children had in helping with the baking is of course priceless. The verdict? My picky hubby (who seldom like to eat those we bought) said our cookies are VERY GOOD!
Here’s the recipe :
PEANUT COOKIE – FAH SANG PENG
300 gms groundnuts, fried/roasted and grinded till fine (taste a few of the nuts before grinding to see that they taste nice and fragrant. Don’t under cook or over burnt)
200 gms castor sugar (avoid using granulated sugar because it will cause the cookies to have very rough and hard texture)
250 gms flour
About 250 ml of oil (use sparingly and use only enough to bind the mixture)
1 teaspoon salt
Mix the dry ingredients like sugar, salt, nuts and flour in a big mixing bowl with finger tips until they are well-mixed and crumbly. Add oil bit by bit and knead the mixture. Once you can roll up the mixture into a small ball without the surface crumbles, then don’t add anymore oil.
Knead the mixture for a while to ensure that the sugar melts. You can tell by looking at the dough. It shouldn’t have speckles of shiny sugar grains but smooth texture.
Roll the dough into small balls and place them on a parchement paper and baking tray. Use a circular tube (like the cover of a ball pen) and press gently on the top of the balls to make round indents.
GLAZE with egg before baking. To glaze, just beat one egg and brush on the cookie.
Temperature : 200 deg. C
Time : About 15 – 20 minutes
You may also want to check the recipe for almond cookies because it is equally yummy.
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