Peanut butter pairs with another legume - chickpeas - in this fresh take on vegan peanut butter cookies!
Preheat oven to 450 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place chickpeas on the baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, until they dry out slightly and become a little roasted (mostly want to remove some of the moisture and add nutty flavor). Remove from oven, let cool slightly, and reduce oven temperature to 350. Reserve baking sheet/paper.
In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the chickpeas and peanut butter. (If you don’t have a hand-mixer, you will need to first process the chickpeas in a small food processor. The hand mixer will not break down the chickpeas like a paddle on a stand mixer. So, first process with a small processor, then transfer back for hand-mixing). Mix, slowly to start, then at a higher speed until the chickpeas smooth out with the peanut butter. Add the maple syrup (starting with 2 tbsp, see note), vanilla, and molasses and mix again. In a bowl, combine the dry ingredients, sifting in baking powder and soda. Add dry ingredients to wet, and mix through until just nicely combined. If the mixture is dry at this point (it can be depending on the moisture in the peanut butter, whether it is a new or older jar), add a touch of milk to help moisten the mix and bring it together. Add 1 teaspoon at a time, and stop once the mixture has formed a ball. Place scoops of the batter (about 1 - 1 1/2 tbsp full) on the reserved baking sheet/paper. Flatten a little with a fork or your fingers. Bake for 12 minutes, then remove and let cool for a minute or two on the pan, then transfer to a cookie sheet to cool completely.