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Thursday, December 9, 2010

Thick and Chewy Double Chocolate Cookies


I hope everyone is enjoying the start of the holiday season! I've been doing some serious baking in preparation for my first annual Christmas Party! I am so excited to finally have a home where I can gather friends and family. This will be our first big party that I am throwing on my own (I had a considerable amount of help from my aunt and mom for Thanksgiving!)

I am planning a post to round-up some great holiday recipes from last year, so expect that soon. In the meantime, I thought I'd share these fudge-like cookies, since fudge recipes are so popular around the holidays.

When I was a kid, our local grocery store would always give a free cookie to each child who came to the bakery with his/her parent. We aren't talking a dinky sample-sized cookie either - these were large bakery cookies! Every once in a while, my mom would let my sister and I get one. My sister would choose a classic, chewy sugar cookie, while my favorite was an equally chewy chocolate-chocolate chip. I set out to find a really good, chewy chocolate cookie, so of course I turned to my America's Test Kitchen Cookbook. These cookies were reportedly fudge-like, which sounded great to me. They really reminded me of a fudgey brownie, or just plain fudge, but they have a nice firm exterior with a chewy fudge interior - seriously good. You can mix in chocolate chips for a true chocolate-chocolate chip cookie, but I skipped that this time around. If you wanted to make these festive, you could even add in some mint chips! (or cinnamon chips, white chocolate chips, butterscotch chips.... yum!)

Thick and Chewy Double Chocolate Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder*
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon table salt
16 ounces semisweet chocolate , chopped
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons instant coffee or espresso powder
10 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 1/4 sticks), softened but still firm
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar

*I had a hard time finding this. I ended up having to go to a local international grocery store. I know Penzeys has it if you have a location near you; otherwise, you might need to look online. I did end up finding some in a traditional grocery store by Ghiradelli near the chocolate chips, although it was not specifically called "Dutch processed" but rather cocoa powder alkalized by the Dutch method - same thing I think! I don't recommend substituting natural cocoa powder . . . I did this in another recipe and had issues.

1. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl; set aside.

2. Melt chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl set over pan of barely-simmering water, stirring once or twice, until smooth; remove from heat.

3. Beat eggs and vanilla lightly with fork, sprinkle coffee powder over to dissolve, and set aside.

4. In the bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment (or with a hand mixer), beat butter at medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 5 seconds (15 seconds with hand mixer). Beat in sugars until combined, about 45 seconds (1 1/2 minutes with hand mixer); mixture will look granular. Reduce speed to low and gradually beat in egg mixture until incorporated, about 45 seconds (1 1/2 minutes with hand mixer).

5. Add chocolate in a steady stream and beat until combined, about 40 seconds (1 minute with hand mixer). Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. With the mixer at low speed, add the flour mixture and mix until combined, about 40 seconds (1 minute with hand mixer). Do not overbeat.

6. Cover with plastic wrap, and let stand at room temperature until consistency is scoopable and fudge-like, about 30 minutes.

7. Meanwhile, adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.

8. Leaving about 1 1/2-inches between each ball, scoop dough onto parchment-lined cookie sheets with 1 3/4-inch diameter ice cream scoop.

9. Bake cookies until edges have just begun to set but centers are still very soft, about 10 minutes, turning cookie sheets from front to back and switching from top to bottom racks halfway through baking. Do not overbake!

10. Cool cookies on sheets about 10 minutes, slide parchment with cookies onto wire rack and cool to room temperature; remove with wide spatula.

Makes approximately 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

Source: Adapted from the America's Test Kitchen Complete TV Show Cookbook

1 comment:

  1. Our grocery store would always do that too!! I can't remember what kinds I would choose, but I do know they were good!
    Can't wait to see how your holiday party pans out--I'm sure it'll be nothing short of fabulous!


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