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Salty and Sweet Cookies

10 Dec

Mr. Parker got the idea for the pretzels and the chips from a “Compost Cookie” recipe on Good Morning America. The base of the recipe has been an old standby since childhood.

These are almost perfect: sweet, salty, crunchy, and chewy. Enjoy!

2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (1/4 teaspoon if you’re using standard table salt)

2/3 cup butter

1/2 cup shortening (I typically use butter flavored Crisco)

1 and 1/3 cups brown sugar

2/3 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup butterscotch chips

3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 cup salted pretzel sticks, smashed a bit

1 cup plain salted potato chips (we used Lays Original)

Cream butter, shortening, and sugars. Add vanilla and eggs. Stir to combine. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix until just incorporated. Throw in the butterscotch chips, chocolate chips, and pretzel bits. Once mixed, break the chips into the batter and stir.

Form into tablespoon-sized semi-flattened orbs. Place about two inches apart on a cookie sheet.

Bake at 375F for about 9 – 10 minutes. Refrigerate dough between batches.

*We originally used 3/4 cup each butterscotch chips and semi-sweet chocolate chips; however, we found the butterscotch flavor to be a bit too sweet and overwhelming, so we cut the butterscotch down to 1/2 cup with satisfactory results.

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Chocolate Chocolate Mint Cookies

9 Feb

Mr. Parker and I bought a bag of dark chocolate mint chips at The Wal-Mart in the middle of the night just because we thought they sounded good. It was in December, and everything mint is appealing around the holidays, you see.

The chips have just been sitting in my kitchen for the last few months, mainly because I didn’t have any sort of baking equipment.

Mr. Parker recently remedied this, though: he presented me with a Pre-Valentine’s Day gift of an Ice Blue KitchenAid Artisan stand mixer. It is one of my favorite things ever. He also got me a few pans, spatulas, and mixing bowls. In return, I have baked him roughly one meeelion calories worth of desserts. A partnership, we have!

Now that I’m finally set up for baking, I was ready to use the mint chips. We thought they might taste funny in regular chocolate chip cookies, so I devised a plan: <i>chocolate</i> chocolate chip cookies.

Chocolate Chocolate Mint Cookies

3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 stick softened butter
1 4 oz bar Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Baking Bar
1 bag chocolate mint chips
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.

Add the butter and sugars to the mixer bowl and cream until light and fluffy. Throw in the egg and vanilla. Stir.

Break apart the Ghirardelli bar into a microwave-safe bowl. I microwaved mine for two intervals of 45 seconds each without stirring. When the chocolate is melted, add directly to the mixer bowl with the butter and sugars and combine.

Next, add the flour mixture to the mixer bowl with the chocolate batter. Mix on low/medium until they’ve merged. It’s normal for the dough to be slightly sticky and dissimilar to the “wet sand” texture of standard chocolate chip cookie dough.

Stir in the chocolate mint chips by hand.

Drop onto a heavyweight, nonstick baking sheet by the heaping teaspoonfuls. No need to flatten. I leave about two inches between each cookie.

Since my oven tends to scorch everything, I baked these for 7 minutes. I think you might need about ten minutes with the average oven, though. You’ll want to remove the cookies when they look a little underdone – they’ll be big and puffy, but that’s how they should look at this point. They’ll flatten and get firmer as they cool.

Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack. They should be thin – crunchy around the edges while slightly chewy in the middle. Perfect for a rich, minty cookie.

I brought these to a Superbowl potluck (I don’t do football, so for me it was just an excuse to see my manpanion and eat food) at Mr. Parker’s office since he and his coworkers were kind enough to invite me, and everyone seemed to enjoy them.I didn’t even have any to take home! Someone who disliked my Pineapple Upside-down Cake, labor-intensive handmade lasagna, and chicken dijon croissants was won over by Chocolate Chocolate Mint Cookies, so I consider them a great success.

They’re great for when cookies are the perfect dish, yet you want or need something a little more novel and exciting than the standard old recipes.

Yields about 30 small/medium cookies.