These are not peanut butter cookies, they are not western peanut cookies. These are Chinese New Year Style Peanut Cookies. They are made up of five ingredients and that's it. They are essentially roasted peanuts, sugar, salt, plain flour and lard. Lots and lots of pork lard.
A good substitute for butter if you're not a vegetarian and very good in producing flaky egg tarts and to make black sesame filling for tang yuan or steamed buns. I always buy pre-packed peanuts. They come in roasted and salted. What I do is I place them in a colander and shake off the excess salt. Then dry roast them in a wok and stop just before it starts turning oily. This twice roasted method gives it a very fragrant after taste and I definitely like it better this way.
Spread them out on a half sheet pan and cool them down completely. Recipe is always 2-2-1-1. It's a ratio rather than a recipe. Simply use any cup (just make sure you measure out all the ingredients with the same cup!) you like and measure two cups full of the roasted peanuts. Pop that into a food processor. Into the food processor goes another 2 cups of plain flour. Doesn't have to be exact; scant, more or less is absolutely fine. Throw in 1 cup of icing sugar or you can also use castor sugar. The icing sugar will help prevent your peanut from being overly grinded into peanut butter. It basically prevents paste formation before you add your lard. Add in a pinch of salt now if your peanut is not pre-packed salted and roasted.
Pulse the ingredients until fine powder. I usually like to leave a bit of bites in my cookies so I stop them before they came too smooth and fake tasting. Now, you can let the food processor run and dribble in a cup (same cup like previous!) of cooking oil but if you use lard like me, I turn the powdered ingredient onto a work table. Throw in a cup of solidified lard and work the dough until it's shiny and lumpy. You might need more or less lard/oil depending on your flour absorption. I always use a cup scant of lard. Form them into balls. Poke them with a long slender straw and glaze.
Bake until done, typical cookie temperature, 170°C to 180°C for 15 to 20mins. The one made using lard has the lightest, flakiest, melt-in-mouth feeling. I hope everyone is not sick of hearing the word 'melt-in-mouth' yet due to the pineapple tarts overdose previously. These are so light, like what I've told Pei Lin, my favourite cookie texture is where when I hold it, it doesn't crumble in my hand that I have to be so careful with it. But when you pop it in the mouth and press it against your lelangit (a Malay word for palate), it crumbles/crushes, followed by a melt-in-the-mouth effect where your tongue and palate kept demolishing it. And that piece of cookie end with a push of saliva down my throat. Talk about food writing...Ahhhh....kinda hard to describe sometimes.
Make these, they are so easy and yummy you'll never buy those from pasar malam (night markets) in Malaysia anymore!