Sharon Tyler Herbst implies this recipe for peanut cakes is the same as the Nigerian kulikuli. However, everything I see online when searching kulikuli suggests that those are balls or cakes of ground, pressed peanuts or groundnuts that have been fried in their own expressed oil. That’s it. Simple as … well, you know.
Not that the recipe for peanut cakes in The Joy of Cookies isn’t simple. It is. And it’s simply delicious. Chopped unsalted peanuts added to the usual suspects: butter, sugar, an egg, baking powder, flour, a little salt and extra vanilla. Rolled out, brushed with egg white and milk and sprinkled with more peanuts. Oh yum. Lovely, light and delicious. The recipe makes about 18 cookies. And that, my friends, is the only downside, because we want more!
And finally, for the curious word nerds — thank you for that Helen (of troy)! — out there: What language is kulikuli and what are its literal translation and etymology? Those are more difficult questions as there are over 520 living and dead languages in Nigeria, and most Nigerians speak the language of the colonizer, aka English, and so kulikuli has become part of the English lexicon. Also, the online translators don’t do Hausa. Nor do they do any of the other 520 indigenous languages to that region of the world. Go figure.